In December, Senator Susan Collins voted for a tax bill that will raise health care premiums by double digits and result in millions more uninsured Americans. She asked her constituents to trust her by promising that Congress would pass a bill to fix the insurance markets she voted to throw into disarray. Now she is trying to rewrite history by claiming that she never made that promise. In response to her shocking claim, Protect Our Care Campaign Director Brad Woodhouse released the following statement:
“If Susan Collins thinks she can rewrite history and push a partisan bill that would force more Americans off coverage, allow discrimination against seniors and people with pre-existing conditions, and enshrine Mike Pence’s favorite new anti-choice restriction, she should know better: her constituents simply won’t accept it. Senator Collins should stop spreading tall tales about a partisan bill that would only further destabilize our health care system.”
WHAT SENATOR COLLINS SAYS ABOUT STABILIZATION PROMISE TODAY:
“The idea that this was the one and only issue, and that there was some kind of deal, is not an accurate assessment of what happened.” [The Hill, 3.22.18]
WHAT SENATOR COLLINS SAID ABOUT STABILIZATION PROMISE LAST FALL:
Here’s what she told the Washington Post in December:
That means Collins will have to cast her vote on the tax bill without knowing for certain that commitments made to her will be honored, leading critics to say she’s getting played for a fool.
If she prevails, Collins will have been responsible for the passage of significant legislation that could help make insurance coverage more affordable for tens of thousands of Americans.
And if not?
“I’m counting on the administration to make sure that does not happen,” Collins said in an interview. “I would consider it a very serious breach of a promise to me.”
And what she said in November:
“I’m pushing to make sure they are passed and signed into law prior to the conference report coming back. So I would know for certain that we’re going to be able to mitigate the impact of repealing the individual mandate.”
AND HOW HER BROKEN PROMISE IS PLAYING:
Today’s editorial in Maine’s newspaper of record: Republicans responsible for looming chaos in health care marketplaces.
“It’s tempting to blame both parties for the latest stalemate, but Republicans own most of this one because they control the process…Collins took a brave stand against repeal of the ACA last summer, but she was on board with the tax bill even though she knew it would have a bad effect on health insurance markets. At the time, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell promised that Collins’ proposal to offset that disruption would get a vote, but House Speaker Paul Ryan made no such commitment.” [Portland Press Herald, 3/22/18]
Conservative columnist Jennifer Rubin:
“Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) — who was promised in exchange for her vote on the tax bill (that stripped out the individual mandate) measures to reduce Obamacare premium costs — was once again stiffed. Her proposal to restore cost-sharing reduction subsidies and fund state high-risk pools was left out of the omnibus. (As many observed at the time, she was snookered by Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.)” [Washington Post, 3.22.18]