It’s exceedingly rare when a mainstream reporter can pull a reversal on a rabid anti-Obamacare congressman, then pin him to the mat on national TV. But that’s exactly what NBC’s Chief Business Correspondent Ali Velshi did to four-time state wrestling champion, Ohio’s 4th District Congressman, Jim Jordan [R-Urbana].
Velshi won the match because, among other shortfalls on the part of the ultra-conservative Freedom Caucus congressman, he showed just how ignorant Jordan is to the fact that no private, for-profit healthcare marketplace has ever existed anywhere in the world.
Watch journalist Velshi pin wrestler Jordan over the him claims that Canadians and other foreigners “all” come to America for health treatments. Congressman Jordan, who served in the Ohio Senate and House before going to Washington in 2006, is one of the die-hard opponents of both the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act [aka Obamacare] and the new American Health Care Act plan being pushed by House speaker Paul Ryan and his leadership team.
Jordan has fought hard to cripple the ACA since it became the national health care law in 2010. Sticking to his caucus’ talking points, Mr. Jordan argues Republicans like himself, who promised to repeal Obamacare in its entirety if elected, should honor that promise. “We should use this thing right,” he said, referring to repealing the ACA in a way “that is consistent with what we told the American people when they elected us, what we told them we were going to do.”
Mr. Jordan wants phase one to be a clean repeal, saying it will unite Republicans. Setting December 2018 as an “off ramp” date from the ACA is also a big selling point, from his perspective, because will offer time to create a health care marketplace. “It’s so logical,” he told Velshi, adding, “What we’ve forgotten is what a health care market looks like.”
The former wrestling champ then said something that Mr. Velshi, a Canadian by birth whose family and relatives live in Canada and enjoy their health care system, couldn’t let the combative official without a fight. “Why do they all come here, then?” Jordan said, repeating largely fake news about Canadians fleeing their national health care system. “We just had an election, and this was a huge issue, we told people we would not keep Obamacare taxes.”
Velshi was merciless, rapid-firing back that not only is there no example of any private marketplace in the world, but Canadians are satisfied with their system, citing his relatives still living there who have their medial needs taken care of at home, thank you very much. Mr. Jordan doesn’t know, or doesn’t want to know, that the American system of health care delivery is the only kind in the world, because it’s based on private, for-profit players who are more concerned about delivering shareholder value each quarter than delivering cost-effective care and treatments.
Congressman Jordan’s idea that expanding Medicaid is bad flies in the face of what Democrats, and even Ohio Gov. John Kasich, think is good policy. Mr. Kasich has garnered consider attention by saying Medicaid expansion has benefited about 700,000 Ohioans. While the governor loves Medicaid expansion, his belief that the ACA is bad law puts him in Jordan’s company.
Mr. Jordan is promising to launch a floor fight to revise the plan dubbed Ryancare or Trumpcare, depending on your political leanings. Appearing on Fox News, Jordan said he will join other conservatives to offer a series of amendments on the House floor, in order to push Ryan’s leadership team toward more market-oriented solutions. Doing that, though, ignores the warning by Sen. Tom Cotton of Kansas that this will do two things: create a bill that won’t pass in the Senate and endanger the GOP House majority in the 2018 mid-term elections.
The congressman said his caucus’ amendments will come next week when the bill comes to the House floor for an up or down vote. “Remember this bill doesn’t repeal Obamacare. This bill doesn’t unite Republicans. This bill doesn’t bring down the cost of premiums,” he said, according to published reports. “So that’s what we’re focused on bringing back affordable insurance for working class and middle class families. This bill doesn’t accomplish that. We want to work to make sure it does.”