Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) gave a forceful response to Texas Republican Ted Cruz’s lengthy diatribe against the Affordable Care Act on Wednesday, noting that the 2009 deliberations on the bill were fair and open and that the American people effectively endorsed it by re-electing President Barack Obama.
Noting that he had strongly fought against the bill’s passage, McCain said that the process was “one of the most hard fought, fair, in my view, debates that has taken place on the floor of the Senate [over] the time I’ve been here.”
McCain then observed that the bill had been a major issue in the 2012 election and that the people spoke through their votes:
McCAIN: I’d remind my colleagues that, in the 2012 election, Obamacare, as it’s called — and I’ll be more polite, the ACA — was a subject that was a major issue in the campaign. I campaigned all over America for two months, everywhere I could. And in every single campaign rally I said “we had to repeal and replace Obamacare.” Well, the people spoke. They spoke, much to my dismay, but they spoke and they re-elected the President of the United States. No that doesn’t mean that we give up our efforts to try to replace and repair Obamacare. But it does mean elections have consequences and those elections were clear, in a significant majority, that the majority of the American people supported the President of the US and renewed his stewardship of this country. I don’t like it, it’s not something that I wanted the outcome to be. But I think all of us should respect the outcome of elections, which reflects the will of the people.
Watch the video:
McCain also slammed Cruz for comments in his lengthy speech that suggested accepting Obamacare was similar to Neville Chamberlain’s appeasement of the Nazis. “I do not agree with that comparison. I think it’s wrong,” he said, “And I think it’s a disservice to those who stood up and shouted at the top of their lungs that we cannot appease, and we must act, and we did act.”
McCain noted that his own father and grandfather both served in World War II and that he had been unsatisfied with the response he received from Cruz when he conveyed his objection to his colleague.