This afternoon, President Trump took to Twitter to issue one of the most breathtakingly dishonest statements of his entire presidency, which is saying a lot.
All Republicans support people with pre-existing conditions, and if they don’t, they will after I speak to them. I am in total support. Also, Democrats will destroy your Medicare, and I will keep it healthy and well!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 18, 2018
Where to even begin?
The Republican Party has been one of the most dedicated defenders of insurance companies’ ability to discriminate against people with pre-existing conditions, having voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act (which banned companies from doing so) a ridiculous 54 times.
In June, President Trump’s own administration refused to defend the Affordable Care Act in court against a lawsuit filed by Texas’ Attorney General Ken Paxton that argues that the individual mandate and its accompanying pre-existing condition protections are unconstitutional, which would have made it legal for health insurance companies to once again extort America’s 130 million people with pre-existing conditions out of huge sums of money for their very lives.
As for the “destroying your Medicare” line, Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced just yesterday that the Senate would be looking to cut entitlements after the mid-term elections and mourned that he hadn’t been able to do it earlier.
He even made it clear that the Republican Party is actively trying to get rid of pre-existing condition protections so they can, uh, “start over” on healthcare:
NEW: McConnell told me & @sahilkapur Trump-backed lawsuit seeking to nix pre-existing conditions protections not a mistake; says no secret GOP wanted to "start over" on health care. 1/https://t.co/vc5jhpPTCp
— Steven Dennis (@StevenTDennis) October 18, 2018
In contrast, the enormously popular idea of expanding Medicare to all Americans has been gaining significant support in the Democratic Party and is likely to be a central plank of their 2020 platform.
The shameless abuse of the truth is enough to make your head spin, and the denizens of Twitter quickly hammered the President for it. Here’s a collection of the best responses:
Maybe when Trump says that "Republicans support people with pre-existing conditions," he doesn't mean that he supports them having access to affordable health insurance, just that, like, they appreciate them having the conditions or like people in that situation or something.
— Matthew Gertz (@MattGertz) October 18, 2018
I know our big wet president can’t gurgle out a single sentence without lying but this shit is ridiculous. the GOP spent 10 years, arms locked together in solidarity, trying to eliminate coverage for pre-existing conditions. they voted to do it *54 times* lol pic.twitter.com/eXi1APhvrb
— KT NELSON (@KrangTNelson) October 18, 2018
You know what people with pre-existing conditions appreciate more than “support”? Having health care coverage. You know, the stuff Trump and the Republican Party teamed up to try and take away from tens of millions of people last year.
This is outrageous gaslighting. pic.twitter.com/3Hd1wEfKed
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) October 18, 2018