We talked the other day about Clint Murphy, a long-time Republican campaign staffer who supports the Affordable Care Act for a pretty simple reason: he wants health insurance, but as a cancer survivor, his pre-existing conditions make that impossible.
But there was something about this story that I found hard to understand. Murphy, who tries to explain to other Republicans that their crusade against "Obamacare" is literally bad for his health, also said he's supporting right-wing U.S. Senate candidate Karen Handel in Georgia next year, despite her intention to destroy the federal health care law and take away his insurance opportunities.
Following up, MSNBC's Chris Hayes talked to Murphy on the air last night, and Murphy was quite articulate in taking his party to task: "At the risk of destroying this country, it seems like the Republican Party is really obsessed with being against anything that Barack Obama is for.... At some point, we need to set aside our partisanship and focus on what's good for the people of this country."
And what of reports that he's supporting Handel next year?
"I must say that I was really taken aback by [Handel's] position because I definitely expected a more nuanced position that would, you know, talk about the parts of the law -- obviously the one that affects me the most, affects a lot of people the most, the pre-existing conditions."But, you know, blanket defund, blanket repeal, those aren't realistic policies because they're never going to go anywhere. They're going to go anywhere. And so, the people out there talking that are doing nothing but scaring people. They are preying on the lowest common denominator politics, and it's really a disgrace, in my opinion."I'm really -- I think it's unfortunate that that's the position that her campaign has decided to take and I wish them all the well, but it's just a bridge too far for me to go on."
If others start to look at this issue in a similarly serious way, Republicans may pay a price at the ballot box for their anti-healthcare crusade.