Affordable Care Act Takes Center Stage in Sherrill v. Becchi


The YouTube clip is right to the point.  Rosemary Becchi, the Republican candidate in CD-11, says simply she wants to see the ACA “eliminated.”

The context of the clip is unclear, but it’s no surprise that Democrats are circulating it and suggesting that Becchi “wants to rip away your health care … during a pandemic?”

Becchi is challenging incumbent Mike Sherrill in a mostly suburban district spanning parts of Essex, Morris Passaic and Sussex counties.

A few points need to be made.

Getting rid of the Affordable Care Act, or if you will, Obamacare, has been a Republican goal since the law was passed in 2010.

All those efforts have failed. Part of that is attributed to simple politics.

But one should not forget that many parts of the law have grown in popularity over the years – no insurance company discrimination against those with pre-existing conditions, kids on their parents’ policies until age 26, no cap on insurance coverage and extending insurance coverage by expanding Medicaid.

The clip the Dems sent out ends immediately after Becchi said she wants to eliminate the ACA. It’s not clear what she said next.

Her campaign dispatched a statement saying that Becchi supports preserving coverage for pre-existing conditions and children on their parents’ policies until age 26.

“My daughter has a pre-existing condition – she was born with her esophagus not connected to her stomach and it has resulted in a lifetime of developmental and health issues,” the statement said.

The statement then added that Becchi doesn’t agree with “turning health care over to the government,” and expressed concerns that the Sherrill-Nancy Pelosi approach will “ruin Medicare for seniors, double your taxes and give free healthcare to illegal immigrants.”

The Democrats’ statement says that 315,000 residents in the district have pre-existing conditions and that 27,000 have secured health insurance through the ACA. The point is obvious – eliminating the ACA puts their coverage at risk.

Most polls, generally speaking, indicate that voters see the Democrats’ approach to health care as preferable to the GOP.  So this can be treacherous terrain for Republicans.

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