Written by Tara Culp-Ressler
A state senator in Idaho is expressing her distaste for President Obama’s health care reform law by drawing a comparison between the private insurance companies participating in Obamacare and the “Jews boarding the trains to concentration camps” during the Holocaust.
According to Sen. Sheryl Nuxoll (R), Idaho should refuse to set up a state-run health exchange under Obamacare because, although the federal government is using private insurers for the time being, the Obama administration will eventually “pull the trigger” on those companies to establish a socialistic health care system.
Nuxoll posted her comments on Twitter, as well as included them in an email blast to 120 supporters:
The insurance companies are creating their own tombs. Much like the Jews boarding the trains to concentration camps, private insurers are used by the feds to put the system in place because the federal government has no way to set up the exchange. Based on legislation and the general process that is written toward this legislation, the federal government will want nothing to do with private insurance companies. The feds will have a national system of health insurance and they will eliminate the insurance companies.
When the Idaho Spokesman-Review asked Nuxoll to clarify her comments, she doubled down on them. Nuxoll said she didn’t mean to disrespect any group of people with her analogy, and explained she said it because “I felt badly for the Jews — it wasn’t just Jews, but Jews, and Christians, and Catholics, and priests. My thing was they didn’t know what was going on. The insurance companies are not realizing what’s going to end up in their demise.”
Idaho’s Senate President Pro-Tem, Brent Hill (R), also stood behind Nuxoll. “This is a very emotional issue for a lot of people,” Hill told the Spokesman-Review. “There’s a lot of ‘stuff’ going around, a lot of information, a lot of viewpoints being expressed. As we get closer to making that decision, the rhetoric’s going to get more dramatic.”
While Idaho Gov. Butch Otter (R) is a vocal critic of health care reform, he has agreed to set up a state-run exchange under Obamacare because he has acknowledged it will allow Idaho to retain more control over its own insurance market. The federal government will simply step in and set up exchanges in the states that refuse to do so themselves. Obamacare’s health exchanges, along with the health law’s optional Medicaid expansion, seek to extend health care to an estimated 30 million low-income Americans who are currently uninsured.
This post was originally published by ThinkProgress.