Congressmen admit they didn’t read, ‘don’t like’ Trumpcare bill
While most of us sunk into a deep depression after the Trumpcare bill squeaked past the House by a single vote Thursday afternoon, Republicans filed into a couple of party buses to drink beer and celebrate like a bunch of frat bros who just pulled off the ultimate panty raid. Meanwhile, their president — like most of us — seemed surprised that he had nabbed that title in the first place. But in between all the chugs and back-patting, many of the celebrants (including their orange-hued leader) admitted that they didn’t even like the bill they’d just so gleefully pushed forward, if they’d read it at all.
As The Washington Post reported, many House GOP members took a “we’ll fix it in post” approach to the bill, and determined that it would be easier to push a shitty bill through now then let the Senate fix their mistakes:
Rather than embrace policy cobbled together to replace the 2010 Affordable Care Act, many Republicans simply decided the best move was to approve a flawed bill — and ram it through a flawed process — so that the Senate would get a chance to fix the House’s mistakes, setting up a major negotiation later.
House Republicans did so knowing that their votes will be portrayed by their Democratic opponents as ruthlessly denying millions of people health insurance and causing Americans with preexisting illnesses to shoulder higher costs.
And they did so knowing that there’s a chance the Senate will choke on the legislation or that House and Senate negotiators will deadlock and never agree to a final product — leaving them on record voting for a bill that could have career-ending consequences.
When asked about his decision to vote in favor of Trumpcare, Florida congressman Mario Díaz-Balart admitted that it was a last-minute decision, and that it was only within 24 hours of the vote that he opted to hop aboard the Trump trainwreck. “This bill is highly imperfect, imperfect, okay? There’s no doubt about that,” Díaz-Balart said… after voting for the “highly imperfect” bill that could see victims of sexual assault and domestic abuse denied health care. He didn’t stop there, though: “Is this bill good? No, I don’t like it,” he said, but reasoned that voting for it would allow him to be involved in future negotiations. Which at least makes it sound as if Díaz-Balart actually read the bill, a minor thing that didn’t seem all that important to everyone who cast their vote. Including New York Congressman Chris Collins.
In a post-vote interview with CNN, Wolf Blitzer asked a very simple question: “Did you actually sit down and read the entire bill plus all of the amendments?” To which Collins responded, “I will fully admit, Wolf, I did not. But I can also assure you my staff did. We have to rely on our staff.” Still, Collins swears that he’s “very comfortable that we have a solution to the disaster called ‘Obamacare.’”
When The Blitz pressed on the importance of, I don’t know, actually reading a piece of legislation that “affects one-fifth of the U.S. economy, and millions of millions of Americans,” Collins — swallowing hard — stuck to his guns:
“I have to rely on my staff. And I can probably tell you that I read every word, and I wouldn’t be telling you the truth, nor would any other member. We rely on our staff and we rely on our committees. I’m comfortable that I understand this bill in its entirety, Wolf, without poring through every word. I’m being quite honest, that’s the way it is.”
At least he’s being honest, about not telling the truth. Hey, it’s a start.