I produced the Mid-Morning Magazine radio show on KBIZ, where he was interviewed by hosts Mike Buchanan and Ken Williams. They asked him questions about his new legislation to try to save disappearing rural, small-town hospitals. Actually sounds like a plan worth looking into, and it is true that something needs to be done to keep medicals centers open in lower population areas. I actually believe the Senior Senator from Iowa is barking up the right tree on this one.
They also asked him about the recent Supreme Court ruling in favor of marriage equality, and he indicated that, although he believes everyone is entitled to respect, he was in favor of "traditional" marriage, as defined as "between one man and one woman." He also said that the new ruling meant that same-sex marriage was now the law of the land, that we have to accept it, and he believed that religious institutions and businesses were protected from having to -- well I don't really know, having to deal with The Gays? -- by some legislation that was passed way back in the 1990s. He also said that since "we" were having to be respectful, tolerant and accepting of "them," that "they" should also be the same to "us."
So, you guys, just because you got the right to get married, please don't get too overconfident and go getting all gay on all the regular people out there who are finding it in the kindness of their "Christian" hearts to tolerate you.
Then they asked him about the Affordable Care Act, and he indicated that it is a terrible law and that the Supreme Court was overstepping its bounds and writing law rather than interpreting it. Of course, that's pure bullshit, and as the head of the Senate Judiciary Committee, he should know that. All the Court did, in this case, was interpret the law due to a suit brought up by people who were splitting hairs over one sentence in the law -- a sentence that they claimed was unclear.
He then recited all the problems with the law and all the broken Obama promises --- people not getting to choose doctors, people not getting to keep their plans -- without explaining the whole truth about those situations (the rejected plans, for instance, provided a substandard level of health care and coverage. They were deliberately thrown out because they were lousy) and without going into the tremendous benefits and successes of Obamacare -- successes which far outweigh his exaggerations.
He then said that there was going to be legislation to fix the problems with Obamacare while keeping some of the good things about it. I was actually surprised he admitted there were good things about it, and he admitted that the health insurance situation before Obamacare wasn't exactly up to par, and that something needed to be done.
Then the time was up and the show was over. We all shook his hand and wished him well, but I had a few minutes before my next show, so I caught him at the door before he exited and told him to PLEASE put a stop to the attempts to repeal or replace the Affordable Care Act. I explained to him that, though I don't qualify for any government subsidies, due to the two chronic illnesses I have, that without Obamacare, I would not have been able to get health insurance at all. Because of these pre-existing conditions, I would never have been able to afford the prescriptions I need, let alone doctor's visits and examinations. Without Obamacare, I would either be dead, bankrupt, on disability, or some combination of all three.
"Obamacare saved my life," I told him. "Please don't try to take it away from me."
He mumbled something about how with Obama in the White House, no law was going to be passed for at least the next two years.
"That's President Obama," I wanted to say to him, but didn't have the nerve.
He then told me that my health care is going to depend largely on who is elected President in 2016.
So guess which side I'll be voting for?
And guess which Senator I will be voting against?