I can remember back in the day, when Obamacare was just a gleam in the of the Democratic-majority congress and GOP Senator Roy Blunt was one of the point persons in the GOP House effort to preserve the status quo of the American healthcare mess. Nor do I remember that he bucked House or Senate leadership, or, more recently, the Trump administration in any of their efforts to destroy or destabilize healthcare delivery to Americans. He, in fact, continues to spout misleading and dishonest claims about the ACA.
All of which made me scratch my head in wonderment when I received a couple of glossy mailers touting Blunt, who was on the record as saying a few years ago that he thought Medicare was a mistake, as a “champion of Medicare access,” and as a “healthcare champion.” Whew! Do you, like me, think that somebody’s shoveling some of that old time barnyard fragrance producer that’s so prevalent in the GOP political world?
Maybe ol’ Roy heard the folks who were making all that noise when Trump and his collection of more or less ornamental GOP congressional garden gnomes actually went after the ACA last summer. Perhaps, as a result, he’s decided that he needs to make some adjustments to his messaging and cover his tracks.
Consider his message on coverage for pre-existing conditions back in 2010 when he was actively carrying water for GOP forces fighting against improved healthcare delivery:
Access for kids who have pre-existing conditions, who would be against that? But access for adults, who have done nothing to take care of themselves, who actually will have as I’ve just described every incentive not to get insurance until the day that you know that you’re going to have medical expenses, that’s, that’s a very different kind of story.
Now contrast that bit of flim-flam with ol’ Roy’s line in 2017:
Since my days in the House, I have supported providing insurance options for people with pre-existing conditions. As we move forward, I’ll work with my colleagues to be sure that no one is denied the care they need based on a pre-existing condition.
Admittedly, if you parse this phrase carefully, there’s lots of weasel language. But it’s equally hard to deny that he wants Missourians to believe that he supports the popular Obamacare provision. More importantly, it essentially contradicts his 2010 “personal responsibility” attempt to divert folks from the tragedies that typified healthcare for the millions of Americans suffering from chronic disease – through no fault of their own, contrary to Blunt’s claim.
So where does the “tight-lipped” (for a reason) Senator really stand? For instance, has anyone heard him endorse or condemn fellow-GOPer Josh Hawley’s participation in a court fight that would end protections for those with pre-existing conditions? Shouldn’t that be the next test for the wooden-faced guy who talks out of both sides of his mouth so adeptly.