Asked by KHOW radio-host Ross Kaminsky today if there were “something that might come up” in the U.S. Senate” that would make him vote against healthcare reform, U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO) delivered a strange answer: the “single-payer plan.”
Kaminsky: So would you personally vote for almost anything just to get the process to go forward and get to a conference committee and try to get something going? Or is there something that might come up in the senate that you wouldn’t vote for on healthcare reform?
Gardner: Well, today, for instance, there is going to be a proposal that the Democrats have put forward in the House of Representatives and, I think has significant support in the Senate as well, from some Democrats. I believe it has 112 cosponsors even in the House of Representatives. It’s the single-payer plan. It’s the universal coverage, the socialized-medicine plan, that has been put forward in the House with 112 Democratic cosponsors. There is going to be a vote on that today.
Gardner: And Bernie Sanders and many others support it.
Gardner’s answer seemed to shock even the conservative Kaminsky, who responded with:
Kaminsky: I didn’t mean that kind of thing, Cory. I meant a Republican idea. Would you vote for any Republican idea simply to move the ball down the field?
This prompted Gardner to launch into the usual vagaries that have been frustrating reporters and constituents alike in recent months.
Gardner: No. Look, I think what I am going to vote for is what I believe can best represent what think is a Colorado concern and value, and that is this: We need to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. So what I vote for is going to be what I judge to be something…
Before spotlighting a single-payer bill as something he’d vote against, Gardner declined to tell Kaminsky if he planned to vote for the so-called “skinny” Obamacare repeal bill, which would, among other things, kill the mandate that individuals must buy health insurance. Congressional analysts estimate that the skinny repeal would cause 16 million people will lose insurance coverage, and premiums will go up by 20 percent.
Gardner: “What I have got to see is, what [the skinny repeal] is going to contain, what it means, and how it is best positioning us for the repeal and replace of the Affordable Care Act,” Gardner told Kaminsky on air.
At the beginning of the interview, Gardner told Kaminsky once again that he wants to replace Obamacare with “something that will work to increase the quality of care, decrease the cost of care.”
But none of the Republican proposals so far would do this, including the two proposals Gardner voted for yesterday.
Listen here to Gardner on KHOW 630-AM’s Ross Kaminsky Show July 27: