By Craig Edwards
When Obamacare passed Congress in 2010, 39 so called ‘Blue Dog’ House Democrats voted against the bill. Only 13 of which survived re-election in the 2010 Mid-Terms. When the 112th Congress voted on repealing Obamacare (HR.2), only Rep. Dan Boren (OK-2), Rep. Mike McIntyre (NC-7), and Rep. Mike Ross (AR-4) voted to repeal. The remaining 10 voted instead to keep Obamacare intact.
In the aftermath of this vote, Solid Principles decided it was time to measure the distance these new supporters of Obamacare have made since November 2010. These dissenting ‘Blue Dogs’ obtained considerable criticism from the far-left base for voting against Obamacare, now all is forgiven. There was also speculation that Pelosi had approved their nay vote, all the 39 ‘Blue Dogs’ came from conservative districts, and no one wanted to face re-election by being the deciding vote on Obamacare. Even Rep. Stupak couldn’t carry that can, and he walked his own self appointed plank.
Through our own investigation, only a few Congressmen were more then willing to milk the accolades for publicity sake. Overall, the vast majority of these candidates conducted campaigns that avoided any association to the Health Care Reform Bill. Instead, great emphasis was placed on their opposition toward Bail-Outs, Washington spending, and their supportive nature towards Veterans.
BLUE DOG FLIP FLOPPER NO:1 – Rep. Heath Shuler [D-NC-11]
Rep. Shuler takes top ranking, not only for milking his ‘No Vote’, he boasts the point home in this You Tube video titled ‘Doing what’s best for our country...‘. He claims:
“I voted against the Health Care bill because it cut Medicare, not cost.”
On the subject of Health Care in the ‘Issue’ section of his campaign website, Shuler removes any reference to Obamacare. Had he not made this video, Rep. Altmire would’ve been the ‘standout’ by a mile. DOWNLOAD PDF.
BLUE DOG FLIP FLOPPER NO:2 - Rep. Jason Altmire [D-PA-4]
Running a close second is Rep. Almire, mostly for this You Tube, ‘Congressman Altmire’s First Campaign Commercial‘ featuring ‘Joe Public’ supporting his ‘No Vote’ on Obamacare
Also on Altmire’s campaign website is a reposted letter titled ‘A Promise Kept’ from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette which supports Altmire’s recent no vote on Obamacare. DOWNLOAD PDF
BLUE DOG FLIP FLOPPER NO:3: Rep. Daniel Lipinski [D-IL-3]
Rep. Lipinski is the ‘Blue Dog’ that almost got away with it. With no You Tube channel to speak of to leave a pesky viral footprint, Lipinski drops the ball by issuing a statement on his campaign website on why he voted against Obamacare.
“For all of these reasons, I cannot support the health care bill. I am deeply disappointed that Congress did not develop a better bill. But whatever this bill’s fate, I will not stop fighting against special interests and for improvements to our health care system that will benefit all of the residents of the Third District. And in the days, weeks, and months ahead, I will continue working to create jobs and revive our economy.” DOWNLOAD PDF
BLUE DOG FLIP FLOPPER NO:4 – Rep. Ben Chandler [D-KY-6]
On his campaign website, Chandler makes no mention on Obamacare apart from a repost from the Herald-Leader newspaper’s endorsement of Ben Chandler
“Chandler’s independence was on display in his vote against Obama’s health care reform measure (we disagreed with him on that one nearly as much as we agreed with him on the cap-and-trade bill) and his refusal to vote for the bipartisan bailout of Wall Street”. DOWNLOAD PDF
On Chandler’s You Tube Channel there is no mention of Health Care, apart from a video in which Chandler shows support for Kentucky veterans and the Leestown Road VA Hospital.
BLUE DOG FLIP FLOPPER NO:5 - Rep. Steven Lynch [D-MA-96]
Rep. Lynch almost successfully avoided the ‘No Vote Card’ during his campaign. Even his You Tubes passed himself off as the working ‘everyman’, even stacking his website with ‘photos-a-plenty’ of Lynch posing with veterans. Except for this statement featured on the ‘Issues’ section of Lynch’s site (most likely written by a ‘hack’ campaign worker) the egg from his subsequent ‘No vote’ on repealing HR.2, is now forever planted on his face.
“Stephen Lynch believes that every American should have access to quality healthcare, regardless of their employment status or income level. However, he believes that the health care reform law passed earlier this year is critically flawed, in that it does very little to reform the current fee for service system.” DOWNLOAD PDF
BLUE DOG FLIP FLOPPER NO:6 – Rep. Jim Matheson [D-UT-2]
Rep. Matheson deserves a special mention for his vast efforts placing enough distance between himself and his ‘No Vote’ on Obamacare. Even his You Tube videos placed great emphasis on his opposition towards the Bank-Bail-Outs’. Once again, it’s the statement portion of his website that ties Matheson to the hip of his ‘No Vote’. TIMBER!
“As the President has said, our health care problem is our deficit problem. I remain committed to ensuring that legislation is not only deficit neutral, but contains costs and is fiscally responsible over the long-term.” DOWNLOAD PDF
BLUE DOG FLIP FLOPPER NO: 7 – Rep. Collin Peterson [D-MN-7]
Peterson also played it safe, avoiding any association with his ‘No Vote’. Even his You Tube campaign videos successfully avoided the topic of Health Care by wrapping Peterson in the flag, and attacking Washington’s appetite for spending. In retrospect, this statement on Health Care (taken from his website) seems direct proof his ‘No Vote’ on Obamacare in 2010, was always going to be temporary.
“Health care reform is an important goal for our country, and I have always supported reform that will bring down the cost of health care without increasing our country’s growing debt. Now that President Obama has signed the landmark health care reform bill, I will work hard to make sure that the bill is implemented fairly.” DOWNLOAD PDF
BLUE DOG FLIP FLOPPER NO:8 – Rep. Tim Holden [D-PA-17]
Like Peterson, Holden too wrapped himself in the flag and targeted the Veteran Voters in his campaign videos. His only connection with Health Care on this campaign website was this vague statement.
“Out of control health care costs are hurting our businesses, putting jobs on the line, and driving working families into debt. Tim is fighting to provide affordable, quality health care to Pennsylvanians who need it without putting our economy in jeopardy.” DOWNLOAD PDF
BLUE DOG FLIP FLOPPER NO:9 – Rep. Larry Kissell [D-NC-8]
To distance himself from voting ‘No’, Kissell focused on job creation, expanding upon it further during his campaign videos. His only acknowledgement of Obamacare with his campaign website came from a media release of Kissell being Endorsed by Charlotte Post that mentions his ‘No’ Vote.
BLUE DOG FLIP FLOPPER NO:10 – Rep. John Barrow [D-GA-12]
Barrow wins the Obamacare Ninja Award for the being most ‘Stealth Blue Dog’ on the campaign front. Barrow left no hint on his ‘No Vote’ in 2010, either on his website or his campaign videos. His Yes vote on HR.2 was so surprising, that I’m still stunned!