On ABC’s This Week, Sen. John McCain defended Sarah Palin’s claim that healthcare reform would result in death panels. McCain argued that reform could lead to death panels, “So what does, what does that lead to? Doesn’t that lead to a possibility, at least opens the door to a possibility of rationing and decisions made such are made in other countries?”
When asked by host George Stephanopoulos if death panels were and extraordinary lie, McCain answered, Well, I think that what we are talking about here is do – are we going to have groups that actually advise people as these decisions are made later in life and …” Stephanopoulos pointed out that this wasn’t in the bill, but McCain kept trying, “it’s been taken out, but the way that it was written made it a little bit ambiguous. And another thing…” Stephanopoulos again pointed out that this wasn’t correct. The provision was about end of life counseling.
McCain kept spinning, “There was a provision in the bill that talks about a board that would decide the most effective measures to provide health care for people, OK? Now, we had amendments, we republican have said that in no way would that affect the decisions that the patients would make and their families. That was rejected by the Democrats and the health committee.” Stephanopoulos pointed out, “But that’s not a death panel.”
Then we got to the crux of the McCain argument that this kind of sort of could lead to death panels, “So what does – what does that lead to? Doesn’t that lead to a possibility, at least opens the door to a possibility of rationing and decisions made such are made in other countries?” McCain was arguing that there aren’t death panels, but there could be someday.
I know McCain feels obligated to stand by his old running mate, but his argument makes no sense, unless you believe in some vast Obama conspiracy to kill the elderly. McCain essentially admitted that there were no death panels, but felt the need to keep spreading the fear. This isn’t very much straight talk from the former captain of the straight talk express.
Since he lost the election last year, McCain has descended into the realm of a partisan hack. Maybe he is bitter about losing the election, but to argue a point that has been so widely debunked in such a deeply flawed manner is not very representative of the kind of senator that McCain once was. I know that he is facing a right wing primary challenger next year, but McCain seems to have completely abandoned any independence that he once had.
Jason is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association