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OurView: Hate towards Obama should not be cause for partisan healthcare bill

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Each week, the editorial board reflects on a current issue in Our View. The position taken does not necessarily reflect the opinions of everyone on the Hilltop Views staff. This week’s editorial board is composed of Viewpoints Editors Lauren Sanchez and Kenny Phipps.

Republicans are nothing if not persistent. On Sept 13, they proposed yet another new healthcare bill, called Graham-Cassidy, to aid in the destruction of Obamacare. The contents of this bill, which are atrocious, are not actually as important as the simple fact that they are trying once again to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.

Earlier this year, GOP officials received terrible backlash from their constituents when they hosted town hall meetings after announcing their plan to repeal the bill that has increased the rate of insured Americans by record amounts. The Graham-Cassidy bill, set to be fast-tracked through the Senate in order to avoid intense scrutiny (read: any scrutiny), has been opposed by the American Medical Association, Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, Planned Parenthood, AARP, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Heart Association and the American Cancer Society, among many more. So, if the people don’t want this, and nearly every major medical association in this country doesn’t want this, then who does?

The discrepancy between what everyone seems to be saying about this bill and what Republicans in Congress are trying to do is symptomatic of a larger trend in American politics. The representation of the common people has been replaced by the representation of big donors, such as the Koch brothers, who have been against the ACA since the very beginning.

There are several actual problems with Obamacare. Rising insurance premiums have caused everyday Americans to feel the strain of broken insurance markets, and the law does not do everything it should for lower class and lower-middle class Americans. However, to Republicans, these issues take a backseat to the one true sin of Obamacare – sharing the name of a president they despise.

Despite how much they preach to our generation about why hating Trump is wrong and how Obama never received the same treatment, they hiss and shrivel up when shown any image of the former president. Let’s not forget after Obama was elected, many people marched on Washington carrying signs reading “SHOW US YOUR PAPERS,” “IMPEACH THE MUSLIM MARXIST” and “GO BACK TO KENYA.” It’s clear there’s still some love loss between Republicans and our former president, but is that beef reason enough to get rid of a healthcare bill that is managing to do some good for our country?

Thankfully, it appears as though the Graham-Cassidy bill will die in the Senate. Several prominent Republicans have refused to say what their vote will be, and John McCain has come out entirely against it. The narrow majority that Republicans currently enjoy quickly falls apart when GOP senators defect, and now three of the 52 have said they will vote ‘no.’

The Republican party is increasingly becoming the party of big donors and spiteful vengeance. This new bill is only the product of that transformation. Rather than focusing on their own hatred for the former president, Republicans should instead try to bridge the partisan aisle and work towards a bill that actually benefits all Americans, rather than the wealthy elite.

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OurView: Hate towards Obama should not be cause for partisan healthcare bill