Kamala Harris is an interesting candidate. On paper, she’s formidable. She checks several of the major inter-sectional boxes, she’s generally well-spoken, and the media absolutely love her. Despite that, she can’t seem to get any traction in the Democratic primary.
Why? Because she’s actually pretty bad at running for President.
Take her many positions on healthcare. Back in January, she came out against private health insurance.
So for people out there who like their insurance, they don’t get to keep it?” CNN’s Jake Tapper asked.
“Well, listen, the idea is that everyone gets access to medical care, and you don’t have to go through the process of going through an insurance company, having them give you approval, going through the paperwork, all of the delay that may require,” she said.
“Who of us has not had that situation where you’ve got to wait for approval, and the doctor says, well, I don’t know if your insurance company is going to cover this. Let’s eliminate all of that. Let’s move on,” Harris explained.
CNN, realizing what they’d just done to one of their preferred candidates, ran out the next day to try to clean up her mess.
“Medicare-for-all is the plan that she believes will solve the problem and get all Americans covered. Period,” Sams told CNN. “She has co-sponsored other pieces of legislation that she sees as a path to getting us there, but this is the plan she is running on.”
So she wants to eliminate private health insurance but also supports not eliminating it? CNN’s article is typical in that it reads like a Kamala Harris press release but it offers no more real clarification on her current stance.
Then in April, she tried yet again to spell out her position.
“On this issue of this whole dynamic about access to private insurance — of course private insurance, you can get supplemental insurance and all of that, but let’s not be duped by a messaging campaign that has been waged for years by the insurance companies to have you into believing that you need to defend them.”
Her new message essentially boiled down to her not being against private health insurance, but those that get it are are a subservient dupes of the insurance companies. That obviously didn’t play well either.
Well, brace yourself because we’ve got another clarification from Kamala Harris on her healthcare position.
Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) struggled when CNN’s Jake Tapper asked her to explain her support for a bill that eliminates private health insurance. pic.twitter.com/1xfYO8hG2u
— Steve Guest (@SteveGuest) May 12, 2019
HARRIS: I support Medicare for all, but I really do need to clear up what happened on that stage.
TAPPER: Yes, OK.
HARRIS: It was in the context of saying, let’s get rid of all the bureaucracy. Let’s get all of the waste…
TAPPER: Oh, not the insurance companies?
This is false. If you read her exchange in the first CNN town hall, she specifically references insurance companies in her rant, claiming that people are waiting around for approval before a doctor is allowed to do anything (while that’s not false with some procedures, it’s nowhere near the norm as she painted it). Now, Harris is claiming she wasn’t talking about the insurance companies at all.
Then things get really confusing.
HARRIS: I support Medicare for all. It is my preferred policy.
TAPPER: As a principle, you mean, not Bernie Sanders’ bill?
HARRIS: I support the bill.
HARRIS: I support the bill. I…
TAPPER: Well, because the bill gets rid of private insurance for everything that…
HARRIS: It doesn’t get rid of supplemental insurance for…
TAPPER: Right, for cosmetic surgery, but for all…
HARRIS: So, it doesn’t get rid of all insurance.
TAPPER: OK. It doesn’t get rid of all insurance.
HARRIS: OK. Right.
TAPPER: … but for all essential health care benefits.
So she supports Bernie’s bill, which does eliminate private insurance, but she doesn’t support it, but she does support it. Also, she’s not supporting getting rid of private insurance because she’ll still let you get supplemental coverage for cosmetic surgery. Makes sense.
Finally, she endorsed “Medicare for All” for illegal aliens because that’s basically a litmus test for Democrats these days.
TAPPER: So you support giving universal health care and Medicare for all to people who are on this country illegally?
HARRIS: Let me just be very clear about this. I’m opposed to any policy that would deny in our country any human being from access to public safety, public education, or public health, period.
So what’s really going on here?
This isn’t complicated.
Harris stands by Bernie Sanders’ Medicare for All bill.
Sanders’ bill would eliminate the private health insurance that 180 million Americans currently use.
Harris supports eliminating private health insurance. https://t.co/tqcHPXefXP
— Zach Hunter (@zhunterDC) May 12, 2019
No matter how much CNN wants to spin it, Harris supports eliminating private health insurance. She’s doing everything in her power to avoid saying so, but her statements leave no other alternative.
This is why Harris is languishing at the bottom of the polls in the Democratic field. While she seems like the kind of candidate the left-wing base would want, she’s basically a more inter-sectional Hillary Clinton. She tries to paint herself as tough but comes across looking like she’s trying way too hard. She can’t articulate a position without seeming inauthentic and dodgy. She tries to act like a cool, modern outsider of a candidate and she’s just not.
Unless she just kills it in the debates, I think her campaign is already on it’s last legs.
Enjoying the read? Please visit my archive and check out some of my latest articles.
I’ve got a new twitter! Please help by following @bonchieredstate.