DCCC: GOP anti-reform attack dog ‘fighting against his district’
The Democratic Party is pouncing on the Republican spearheading opposition to the health care bill, after a new report on Thursday revealed that his constituents are in dire need of reform.
Rep. Pete Sessions’ (R-TX) Dallas-area district has the highest number of uninsured residents of any GOP-controlled region in the country, according to census data compiled by the Dallas Morning News.
“It’s clear that Representative Sessions is fighting against his district which deserves health insurance reform that breaks the stranglehold of insurance companies, reduces rising costs and expands insurance to more people,” said Jesse Ferguson, spokesman for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, in a statement to Raw Story.
Sessions, the chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee, has called the Democratic effort to extend health care coverage “deceptive” and containing “no advantage” for the people. A new NRCC ad that’s hit the airwaves denounces the bill as “corrupt,” calling it “full of special deals” and constructed through “bribery.”
The Congressional Budget Office has concluded the package will cover an additional 31 million Americans while reducing the deficit over a decade. According to the House Energy and Commerce Committee, 171,000 of them will be in Sessions’ district, the Dallas Morning News reports.
“I don’t see how he can be opposed,” Dolores Burciaga, an uninsured and unemployed constituent of Sessions, told the Morning News. “I guess he’s never had people close to him who are struggling because of health care.”
The DCCC painted Sessions as a pawn for the insurance industry, mirroring a charge made far and wide by Democrats against GOP members.
“But when your Congressman makes his career out of standing behind Washington special interests and Wall Street bankers instead of Texas families, his selling out to the health insurance lobbyists should come as no surprise,” Ferguson wrote to Raw Story.
The seven-term congressman recently told his constituents over e-mail that the bill is “kickback-laden” and full of “backroom deals.” Democrats have pledged to eliminate special deals cut with wavering senators like Ben Nelson (D-NB) from the final package.
Sessions’ opposition to the bill is representative of his party’s official stance, as not a single Republican in either chamber of Congress is expected to vote for the bill and GOP leaders have pledged to do everything in their power to scuttle it.
The Texas representative came under fire in November for purportedly inappropriate comments when he compared the treatment of female-related health issues with the tougher rules placed on smokers.
President Obama and Democratic leaders are stepping up their efforts to whip up votes, promising a vote in the House this weekend and confidently forecasting success.
An NBC/Wall Street Journal poll on Tuesday revealed that the public is evenly split over whether it should succeed or be struck down. While Democrats are largely supportive, some progressive activists said the removal of the popular public option reflected that the party’s hesitance to take on insurance companies.