Isakson backs Obamacare repeal-and-delay effort he once criticized

WASHINGTON — Georgia U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson’s vote Wednesday to back an Obamacare repeal-and-delay effort wasn’t exactly a surprise, but it was still notable given his past criticism of the approach.

As we’ve reported over the last few months, Isakson has kept his comments on health care intentionally vague in order to give himself maximum room to negotiate on the GOP’s Obamacare replacement effort. Put another way, he’s not viewed as a potential “no” vote for Mitch McConnell as the majority leader looks to find 50 Republicans to support a repeal plan.

“I’m on the team and I’ll be doing what Mitch needs me to do,” Isakson said in March, when he returned to D.C. shortly after back surgery to provide McConnell with the final vote needed to pass a Planned Parenthood bill.

Isakson has voted with his party on all major health care proposals this week. So when it came to backing a Republican plan to repeal large swaths of the Affordable Care Act after two years, he wasn’t exactly seen as a swing vote. He and Perdue both backed a similar bill back in January 2015, when President Barack Obama was still in office.

But since then, Isakson has expressed skepticism about repealing Obamacare, a law he has vehemently opposed, without immediately passing some sort of replacement.

“It is unsustainable and impractical and it’s wrong for us to say we’re going to repeal Obamacare without replacing it with a plan that we know works and has the opportunity [to work],” Isakson said in a January speech on the Senate floor.

The third-term Republican expressed reservations about the repeal-and-delay strategy as recently as Tuesday, but he also wouldn’t commit about how he would vote.

“I don’t know if that’s the ideal way to end (Obamacare), in my judgment,” he said of the plan. “Where I would go is to try and fix the things that are broken and get it back as much as we can to the private sector and have a competitive system that works.”

But Isakson also said, “I don’t know what the amendments are yet. I’m going to support what I think is right, which is what I always do. Nobody knows until we see it.”

Isakson and Perdue were two of 45 Republicans to back the repeal-and-delay proposal on Wednesday. It ultimately fell five votes short of adoption.

Follow along with their health care votes here

 

Reader Comments 0

206 comments
Debra L. Cone
Debra L. Cone

I cannot stand this jerk. I left messages almost everyday to keep the ACA, just fix the problems or go single payer. No response, just another OLD WHITE MAN, trying to control women.

Mark Butler
Mark Butler

You can always count on gutless Johnny to fasilate and then roll over like a wimp!

Ralph Grunz
Ralph Grunz

The AJC hates Republicans. They constantly LIE in an attempt to berate them. They actually created a fake poll for Ossoff.. .. YOu remember that? On sunday before election they reported new poll with Ossoff leading by over 2pts. The only problem??? IT WAS A TOTAL LIE... Meant to discourage Republican voters and encourage them to stay home. WELL guess what happened? He lost by8pts only 36 hours later... JUST A FAILED ATTEMPT... A BIG LIE THAT DID NOT WORK....

Cynthia Hale
Cynthia Hale

Don't know the solution it is a mess, but don't think I want what England has which allowed them to tell parents they could not take their child elsewhere to seek help and let the child die. Might not have been anything that could have been done, but others offered the option to try and England said no. Sounds like freedom there may be slipping

Eric Sowers
Eric Sowers

They've never had freedom like ours. We are Citizens, they are Subjects. England is the most surveilled country in the world, they have the Official Secrets Act, secret trials, and you can't own a multi-tool with a blade on it, let alone a gun of any kind even in your own home. So of course home invasion is their most common crime. I'd say freedom has done slipped.

Charlie Martin
Charlie Martin

Can anybody tell me how obamacare is affordable????? GOVERNMENT GET OUT OF MY HEALTHCARE I DONT NEED YOUR AFFORDABLE HELP!!!!!

Katie Phelps
Katie Phelps

he should never have been re elected. shameless.

Nelson Miller
Nelson Miller

A single-payer system is the way to go. It is time to stop making middle men extremely wealthy for no reason.

George Mortensen
George Mortensen

To hell with the AJC. This is not a real news organization. This is an extension and has been for years of the Democrat Party.

Tom Weyandt
Tom Weyandt

The senior senator is a pathetic reflection of what he could have been. I ache for his physical issues but he is essentially worthless as an advocate for Georgians.

Don Ruehlow
Don Ruehlow

Shame on you for voting to take health care away from your constituents We won't forget this cruel vote and we will hold you accountable.

Lynn Sims
Lynn Sims

Who is surprised? Raise your hand.

Beverly A. White
Beverly A. White

He looks CRAZY! Come on Johnny, time to come inside........

Nelms Graham
Nelms Graham

Obamacare, as the Supreme Court stated, "Is a TAX". If you like it, then you must not be paying for it. Socialism will always work untill the other peoples money runs out. Just how deep is the nations debt now? We are stealing the future from our children and grandchildren with laws of this type.

Rebecca Hopkins
Rebecca Hopkins

They Are All Corrupt We The American People Sees This

Marilyn Mitchell Davidson
Marilyn Mitchell Davidson

Thank you, Kimberly! It's so nice to read posts with facts! Glad your daughter was helped. Still have hope that none of the Repub bills will pass.

Lisa Tyson Dunham
Lisa Tyson Dunham

Papa died Sunday, All dead white boys say "God is good", White tongues hang out, "God is good" Sodom, South Georgia, slept through an acre of bones, slept through Christmas

Brenda Bender
Brenda Bender

Useless jerk - he needs to be out of politics

Marc Spears
Marc Spears

Sounds to me like Georgia rep don't want their jobs

Pam Sezgin
Pam Sezgin

So disappointed in Johnny Isakson. He used to be a sensible moderate. Now, the only thing that matters is voting in lock-step with the other Repugnants. The voters be damned.

Cyn Sneed
Cyn Sneed

Do nothing Johnny hasn't done anything to amount to a hill of beans since he's been in the Senate. What he knows about Healthcare you could ride on the head of a pin. He will do whatever Mitch McConnell wants him to do because his head is way up McConnell's backside.

Allan Boyd
Allan Boyd

This old out of touch partisan dinosaur needs to retire. A complete and total embarrassment to the State of Georgia.

Norman A. Thums
Norman A. Thums

Leon Jackson what you don't realize is that Medicare is damn near broken. Caps have forced doctors to limit the number of Medicare patients they will accept. There are caps on hospital stays and they will kick you out unless you wish to pay all out-of-pocket.

Rhonda Chambers
Rhonda Chambers

Is he well he look as though he can use what he just voted to repeal.

Mary Henderson
Mary Henderson

Thank you Johnny, we need real health insurance NOW.

Lynn Bollinger
Lynn Bollinger

Total sell-out, Mr. Isakson! You have sold your political soul to the Trump quagmire of disrespect and disregard for all that is American. Shame on you!

Mary Anne Carpenter
Mary Anne Carpenter

Shame on you leech. #Karma will catch up to you very soon. #Melting #snowflake loser #idiot jerk #FreeLoader

Marilyn Mitchell Davidson
Marilyn Mitchell Davidson

Life isn't all rainbows for everyone, Mary Ann. Think before you speak so carelessly to your fellow citizens.

Lexa King
Lexa King

Useless yet again. Isaakson, just look at your photo. What do you 5have to contribute? Nothing. Go away youbuseless piecebof Rethuglican crap.

Kimberly Seman
Kimberly Seman

The ACA saved my daughter's life. Had the GOP actually let it be fully funded and not letting states like Georgia to opt out it would be doing better then it is. Here in Georgia we have lost 6 rural hospitals all because our Republican Governor would not allow the ACA and took one of the harshest stances against it. We have 653,000 without health insurance in Georgia alone. How many hospitals and medical personnel will have jobs once the GOP repeal the ACA completely? It will decimate healthcare across this country. The CBO say up 32 million will lose coverage and over 20 million will loose their healthcare jobs across the country. Republican's reaping death and destruction with their policies.

Joanne Ward Lutes
Joanne Ward Lutes

Has anyone noticed how old these people are? I know they are highly intelligent, have lots of experiences; however, don't we need some, just a little youth?