Should we be comforted that the Republican-controlled Senate now will “save” the poor, sick and elderly of America from the depredations of the House-passed effort to repeal Obamacare?
Here’s how the liberal Think Progress headlines it:
Yes, that fellow in the gang of 13, second from left on the second row, is none other than Tough-Talking Tom Cotton of Arkansas, who’s rarely revealed much empathy for the struggling among his constituency.
Five Republican women sit in the Senate, but at least two of them oppose ending federal money to pay for maternal and family planing care provided by Planned Parenthood.
Defunding Planned Parenthood isn’t the only way Trumpcare hurts women. The bill also eliminates the requirement that all health care plans cover maternity care, and allows insurance companies to charge more for certain “pre-existing conditions,” including those particularly affect women, such as domestic abuse and rape.
As ThinkProgress reported yesterday, “Prior to Obamacare’s requirement that health insurance plans cover maternity care, for example, 62 percent of plans on the individual market didn’t include it. Only nine states chose to mandate maternity coverage. And, often, women were forced to pay more for their plans than men anyways — even though these plans didn’t include coverage essential to women’s health care.”
Misogyny is in vogue these days, from the White House on down. Republicans talk openly of the unfairness of the cost of coverage for all including maternity care and contraception (though not prostate care or Viagra). One Republican yahoo in Alaska was even quoted the other day as saying that women get pregnant out in the sticks so they can get a trip to Anchorage for an abortion. I kid you not. And of course there’s the head-slapper that Trump has put a critic of contraception in charge of overseeing family planning.
UPDATE: Washington Post profiles Tom Cotton — how Trump win slowed his presidential hopes and how he’s aligned strongly with Trump since but has distanced himself from House bill. He’s in an “awkward” position, story notes, because of huge numbers affected in Arkansas by Obamacare repeal. He pretends to be for the people, but there’s no doubt he opposed the Medicaid expansion.
As the House shaped its bill in the Spring, Cotton urged caution in the pace at which it was proceeding, but he did not advocate restraint in shredding some directives in the law. In effect, it was a simultaneous nod to conservatives on policy and centrists on timing.
He’s a double-talker, in other words. Yep. Though he won’t talk at all to some in the press, including from Arkansas. The Post he has time for.