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Next Year In The New Jerusalem

GOP victories will redeem Washington: the false Religious Right promise that will never die

A few days ago, Washington hosted “Road To Majority,” which bills itself as “the premier event” for conservative people of faith. Its sponsor is the Faith & Freedom Coalition, Religious Right macher Ralph Reed’s successor to the now-defunct Christian Coalition. The event attracted all the top Republican leaders (Trump, Pence, McConnell, K. McCarthy) except for Paul Ryan, as well as many other sympatico Congressional conservatives.

President Trump delivered a speech to the conservative Christians in which he spoke of obvious Christian priorities, like religious liberty, and some that were not so obvious, like passing a huge tax cut and getting out of the Paris climate accords. And there was this:

THE PRESIDENT: … Restoring freedom and opportunity also means repealing and replacing the disaster known as —

AUDIENCE:  Obamacare!

THE PRESIDENT:  That was easy.  (Laughter.)  Do you see how it’s failing?  Okay.  So I’ve been saying 116 percent for so long — it was Arizona.  So yesterday, I have a new number — 204 percent, in Alaska, increase.  It’s a catastrophe.  Obamacare, as one of the big insurance companies had said, is in a spiral.  It’s in a death spiral.  It is dead.  Dead.  Some of the states are losing their insurance companies.  Yesterday, Ohio lost one of the big ones.  And Ohio has got problems now.  They all have problems — Kentucky, Tennessee.  Every place I go.

But we’re dealing with obstructionists.  The Democrats are obstructionists.  You know what, it would be great to get along with them, but it seems to be impossible.  They are obstructionists.  And they have a healthcare plan that’s a disaster, called Obamacare.  Again, the insurance companies are fleeing, the premiums are through the roof.  The deductibles — I mean, unless you die a long, horrible, slow death, those deductibles are so high — sadly, folks, you’ll never get to use them.  It is a disaster what’s going on with Obamacare.  Nobody wants to talk about it.  But you take a look at the premiums, how high; you take a look at those deductibles.  You have nothing.

And then, of course, the mandate.  Let’s pay to get out of it, okay?  We’re the only one — we pay to get out of not paying.  That’s how bad it is.

So Obamacare is dead.  And don’t let them pin it on the Republicans, by the way.  We’ve only been here for a short period of time, okay?  But a good bill passed in the House.  Something, I hope, great is going to come out through Mitch McConnell and the Senate.  And we’re working very hard.  I can tell you, we’re really working hard.

And if we had the best plan in the history of the world, we wouldn’t get one Democrat vote.  Just remember that.  If we had a plan that gave you the greatest healthcare ever in history, you wouldn’t get one Democrat vote because they’re obstructionists.  They’re bad, right now, for the country.  They’ve gone so far left that I don’t know if they can ever come back.

He went on like this. Leaving aside the question of the proper Christian stance on health care, it amazes me, really amazes me, that there are people who buy this “Democrats are obstructionists” line from Trump. The FFC termed its first meeting “Road to Majority” back when Democrats held the Senate. Well, now the GOP has both the House and the Senate, as well as the White House. The Obamacare replacement failed, and is failing, because the Republicans cannot make their majority work.

Besides which, their Obamacare replacement is overwhelmingly unpopular. A Quinnipiac poll taken three weeks ago showed only 20 percent of voters favor it. 

So, when the president whose party controls both the White House and Congress stands before a Christian Right revival meeting and blames Democratic obstructionism for his party’s inability to govern; and when he does so within the context of a mission to recover the political majority that has actually been theirs since the last election, on the understanding that this will finally allow them to achieve their legislative goals — well, I wonder why so many Christians are eager to be swindled.

This false idea that Washington Babylon will be transformed into the Biblical New Jerusalem if only we will elect Republicans — and the right kind of Republicans — is one you can use to fleece Christian conservative voters endlessly. We are always and forever just one vote away from Paradise.




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