Three of four candidates who appeared at a forum yesterday for Republicans running for Colorado’s new eighth congressional seat said they would back a “patriotic education bill” — and vote to repeal Obamacare.
Asked by a moderator during the hour-long forum, which was sponsored by the Youth Federalists Initiative and took place at KHNC radio station in Johnstown, if they would vote for a “patriotic education bill” with a curriculum from Trump’s 1776 Commission, Tyler Allcorn, a former Green Beret; Lori Saine, a Weld County commissioner; and state Sen. Barbara Kirkmeyer replied that they would vote for it.
“We clearly need reform in our education system,” said Allcorn, adding, “Our children need to understand what it means to be an American.”
Thornton Mayor Jan Kulmann, the fourth Republican at the forum, wouldn’t say if she’d support a patriotic education bill.
“I think what you’re asking is for us to vote on a bill we haven’t read yet,” said Kulmann, referring to the patriotic education bill referenced in the question. “Don’t we have too much of that in Congress already? So I don’t have an answer to that yet but I am intrigued to look into this further.”
“I am never going to vote for something without reading it first,” Kulmann told the crowd.
Asked after the forum whether they would vote to repeal the Affordable Care Act if Republicans took control of the U.S. House, Allcorn, Kulmann, and Saine said they’s vote to kill Obamacare, while Kirkmeyer said she’d piece together health care policies to improve the American health care system.
“I would vote to repeal it,” said Allcorn, when asked if he’d vote to kill Obamacare in a Republican-controlled House. “I think his intent was misguided and misplaced. Do I think there needs to be reforms in our health care system, things like that, absolutely. But we don’t need to be nationalizing health care. Nationalizing health care is not going to get us to where we need to be.”
Saine would also vote to repeal Obamacare, she told the Colorado Times Recorder, and “replace it with something that works.”
“The free market does work,” said Saine, adding that she wants transparency in pricing and insurance across state lines.
“There are a lot of things we can do to bring down the cost of insurance,” said Saine.
Kulmann also replied with a simple “yep” when asked if she’d get rid of Obamacare.
“I think Obamacare went way too far,” said Kulmann. “It forced people into getting health care when they may have already had an option, or they didn’t necessarily need one. It’s like car insurance. We shouldn’t be forcing people to buy car insurance just like we shouldn’t be forcing people to buy health insurance. We should have it available, make it easy to get — absolutely agree with that. But forcing people to buy things? That’s not okay.”
“I’m an engineer, and when I see a challenge, I find a solution,” Kulmann told the crowd at the forum.
Republicans in Congress will need Kulmann’s engineering skills to repeal the national health care law, because the GOP failed to do so when it controlled Congress and the presidency. In 2017, three measures ranging from outright repeal of the Affordable Care Act to the narrower measure that was supposed to squeak by with a bare majority in the Senate failed, in dramatic fashion. The last proposal, the so-called “skinny repeal,” lost thanks to defections from three Republicans, including the late Sen. John McCain of Arizona, who’d just returned to the Senate after receiving a diagnosis of brain cancer and whose downward-pointing thumb is associated with the death knell of GOP efforts to overturn the law.
Kirkmeyer, who was the only candidate to answer, “Trump,” when asked who was her favorite president, said the health care debate has gone beyond Obamacare.
“We just really need to go back and look at what’s in place, what’s working, what’s not working, and come back with a comprehensive plan of what we can do to make sure health care costs go down and people can access health care when they need it,” said Kirkmeyer, saying we’ve progressed beyond Obamacare at this point. “We need to have affordable health care.”
CORRECTION: Tyler Allcorn’s name was spelled incorrectly.