ThinkProgress — Wednesday, voters confronted the five-term Congressman with an entirely different sentiment: they demanded to know why Republicans would take away the law’s protections for people with pre-existing conditions without offering any credible other alternative for reforming the health care system. One grieving mother, who spoke to reporters before the event, said that her son was denied insurance because of a pre-existing health condition and eventually died of colon cancer.
This is happening in other places, too:
TP — QUESTIONER: What happens to us when Obamacare is repealed? What happens to people with pre-existing conditions that can’t get health care? What happens to those of us who finally have access to health insurance for the first time in nine or ten years? What happens to us? And you want to make this local, I’ll make this local. I’m a constituent, right now I can’t get health care. I’m waiting for this [insurance marketplace] to open and I’d like to know why we keep repealing [Obamacare]?
That last question was directed toward a congressman who is a disciple of a full-blown Christian nnutcase named Bill Gothard, as are Mike Huckabee and Sarah Palin. There’s no point in trying to reasons with him, he’s probably convinced Jesus is clapping every-time he fucks over the poor and the sick for the rich and the corrupt. He and others like him are a terrible public face for Christianity, but that’s their PR problem, not ours.
As far as I know there is absolutely no coordinated plan to deliver people with these concerns to town-halls in red districts. That’s not to say I should or would know if there was. But I haven’t heard a peep about anything like it. To the best of my knowledge this is a grassroots, organic trend from legitimate, registered constituents who do not know each other and are worried, some might even be near panic, about basic survival if the GOP were to succeed and eliminate their last chance for insurance.
Maybe the explanation is simple: it’s not 2010 anymore. The full weight and damage wrought by this recession has dropped squarely into the lives of millions of people by now. Employer insurance plans are irrelevant for the unemployed, but they still get sick or developed medical issues just like anyone else. Meanwhile, Republicans have not only gotten a well-deserved rep for proudly doing nothing to help anyone but the powerful and wealthy, they have systematically alienated key voting blocs. Sooner or later most everyone knows and loves a gay person, a diabetic, a Latino, an asthmatic, a single mom, or other people who are vulnerable, traditional targets of the kind conservative bullies have long zeroed in on.
Whatever the reason, the whole republican blame and shame shtick is just not flying like it used to, and they have painted themselves into a nearly inescapable ideological corner. A full blown melt-down has been long predicted, some even say the conservative movement is finally collapsing under the weight of its own failures and corruption and ignorance, no matter how much money is thrown at it. I still don’t know if that’s quite as imminent as some might predict, or if it will ever happen. But it’s closer than I’ve ever seen before.