GOP governor won't stand up for people with pre-existing conditions


Florida governor and Senate candidate Rick Scott is refusing to stand up for 7 million of his constituents who have pre-existing health conditions.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott has refused to comment on or push back against the Trump administration's ongoing effort to destroy Obamacare's protections for people with pre-existing conditions.

The Trump administration has allied itself with 20 conservative states, including Scott's own state of Florida, that are suing to strike down one of the most popular provisions in the Affordable Care Act (ACA): the guarantee that anyone who has pre-existing health conditions like diabetes or cancer cannot be charged more or denied coverage by health insurance companies.

As many as 7 million Floridians could be affected by this move, Politico reports. What's more, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell claimed Tuesday that "everybody" in the Senate wants to preserve safeguards for people with pre-existing conditions.

But Scott, who is running for the U.S. Senate in Florida, punted on an opportunity to publicly oppose the efforts to destroy those safeguards.

"I don’t know much about that court case and I heard — somebody just said — that the president tweeted something or did something about that," Scott said at an event in southern Florida when he was asked about the Republican initiative.

Like Scott, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) has not seen fit to stand up for the Florida families whose access to basic health care would be thrown into chaos, and who could face death or bankruptcy as a result.

"This is nothing but a heartless, political move that will hurt Florida families," said Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL), whom Scott is attempting to unseat, in a statement hitting the anti-ACA lawsuit and Scott. "I will continue to fight to protect health care for Floridians, as Trump and his allies, like Rick Scott, keep pushing to dismantle the law that improves access to health care for millions of Floridians."

Scott has been an Obamacare opponent for years. When he first ran for governor in 2012, he did so on a platform opposing the health care law's expansion of Medicaid.

In office, Scott has refused to implement Medicaid expansion — even though it would benefit over 1.2 million Floridians.

The candidate made a fortune as the head of the Columbia/HCA hospital company and was forced out in the middle of an investigation into health care fraud. The company ultimately had to pay a then-record $1.7 billion fine.

Scott had previously set himself up as a Trump fan and apologist, but has avoided associating himself with Trump since announcing his run for federal office.

The Trump administration and Republicans are once again trying to hurt Americans by attacking their health care — and once again, Rick Scott is helping them do it.