Vulnerable GOP senator votes for 3 anti-health care judges in a week


GOP Sen. Martha McSally is helping stack the federal judiciary with judges hostile to basic health care.

Sen. Martha McSally (R-AZ) spent the week before Memorial Day supporting Trump-nominated judges with clear anti-health care records.

On Tuesday and Wednesday, McSally voted to confirm three federal court judges to lifetime appointments despite their hostility to key health care protections, including a woman's right to control her own body.

On Tuesday, McSally voted to confirm Daniel Collins, who once opposed women's access to contraception through their health care provider. The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights described Collins as a "far-right extremist" who "has worked to restrict civil and human rights in many areas of the law, including women's reproductive freedom and criminal justice."

On Wednesday, McSally voted to confirm two radical judges: Howard Nielson and Stephen Clark.

Nielson has repeatedly advocated for severely restricting a woman's access to abortion with arguments so extreme they were rejected by the Supreme Court. He also argued several times against the rights of the LGBTQ community, including opposing recognition of same-sex marriage.

Clark previously served on the board of directors for the anti-abortion Lawyers for Life group and has attacked institutions like Planned Parenthood.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell changed the rules of the Senate this year, which enabled him, McSally, and the Republican majority the ability to ram Trump's radical judges through the confirmation process more quickly than in the past.

Given McSally's history of trying to deny health care to millions of Americans, her support of anti-health care judges should not be a surprise. When Republicans were preparing to vote for a bill to take away health care from millions and strip away protections for people with preexisting conditions, McSally was leading the charge.

"Let's get this fucking thing done!" she reportedly shouted to her Republican colleagues in 2017, moments before the House of Representatives voted for the bill (McSally was a House member at the time).

While she failed to accomplish her goals legislatively, McSally is helping Trump stack the court with anti-health care extremists.

And while she is up for reelection in 2020, McSally has not changed her position on health care. In fact, when asked if she had, she called any such suggestion "Fake news."

McSally's penchant for supporting Trump's most radical picks for the federal bench was noticed in her home state.

"Martha McSally keeps voting to give lifetime appointments to judges who share her record of siding with corporate special interests over people and fighting against Americans' health care access," Brad Bainum, spokesperson for the Arizona Democratic Party, told Shareblue Media.

"Arizonans deserve a Senator who will work for them, and Martha McSally keeps putting partisan politics and her corporate special interest backers first in Washington, at the expense of hardworking Arizonans."

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.