Evidence is increasingly clear that Republicans are bad for your health, particularly if you are old, in military, or poor. They have been wrong about almost everything to do with the pandemic. They turned their head when the Russians placed bounties on the heads of American soldiers in Afghanistan. They are suing to end the Affordable Care Act, a move that would strip health care from millions of people in the midst of a global pandemic. Now, they are about cut off unemployment benefits to people whose jobs have disappeared.
Intelligence reports informed the White House at least as early as March 2019 that Russians were paying Afghan militants and criminals to kill U.S. service members. John Bolton says that he briefed Trump at that time. Trump has taken no action but has instead tried to invite Russia to join the G-7 conference. The incident should be particularly damning for members of North Carolina’s GOP Congressional Delegation. Troops from Fort Bragg have been stationed in Afghanistan throughout the period the bounties have been offered. Several members of the 82nd Airborne, stationed at Fort Bragg, have been killed over the past year. None of the GOP Senators or Members of Congress have condemned the president’s lack of action or his praise of Putin. If you are a soldier, the GOP is bad for your health.
As for addressing the pandemic, Republicans have come out strongly against almost any effort to mitigate the impact even as the disease starts spreading rapidly again. They have ridiculed wearing masks despite the effectiveness of the measure in curbing the spread of the disease. Lieutenant Governor Dan Forest, the GOP nominee of Governor, is suing Governor Roy Cooper for keeping certain businesses closed, despite spikes in incidents in states that opened too early.
Conservatives told us that we were making worst case scenario predictions when epidemiologists told us that between 250,000 and 1.5 million people could die over two years if we didn’t take precautions. Today, we have almost 130,000 dead in just four months and Trump’s former Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration says the death rate will go up. At this rate, we will have more than 200,000 deaths by the end of 2020. Free marketeers are arguing that we need to speed up opening society but polls show strong resistance to opening too soon. People are more concerned about the virus than the economy right now. If you are among those vulnerable to the worst of COVID-19, Republicans are bad for your health.
While the pandemic is both making an increasing number of people sick and costing them their jobs and insurance, the Trump administration is suing to end the Affordable Care Act. If the lawsuit is successful, people with pre-existing conditions could lose their insurance. In addition to people who lose their employment-related insurance, even more would have difficulty getting insurance. Republicans in Congress are all supporting the lawsuit, indicating that they’re bad for your health if you depend on the Obamacare exchanges or are at risk of losing your employer-based insurance.
Finally, Republicans in North Carolina made the state the worst state in the nation to be unemployed. They slashed unemployment benefits while the economy was strong and now that it’s weak, people will be left out in the cold. Not only is the amount of assistance the stingiest in the nation, the time that people are eligible to receive benefits is less than half the national standard. If you need money for things like food, housing, or medical care, well, then Republicans are bad for your health.
As pressing issues around health and financial security threaten the well-being of North Carolinians, the GOP is turning its back on the people it’s supposed to serve. Our military defend our country, but the GOP won’t defend our soldiers, marines, or sailors against foreign aggression. Instead, they’ll continue to prop up a morally corrupt president whose primary interest is his own re-election. The same Republicans are willing to allow people to become uninsured during a pandemic and unwilling to offer any help in mitigating its spread. The GOP has become a party out of touch with the American people and increasingly bad for our health. If voters are self-interested, we will see massive regime change in November. It can’t come soon enough.
Thomas Mills is the founder and publisher of PoliticsNC.com. Before beginning PoliticsNC, Thomas spent twenty years as a political and public affairs consultant. Learn more >