Why did Republican State Sen. Mark Green of Tennessee oppose his state’s plan to expand Medicaid and provide health insurance for low-income residents using federal dollars?
According to video posted by Justin Kanew, his Democratic opponent in a U.S. House race, it’s because Green felt it would distract people from finding God. The clip comes from a speech Green made in 2015 and was part of the reason he withdrew his own nomination to be Donald Trump‘s Army secretary before his confirmation hearings. He didn’t want to be known publicly for what he thought he was saying to religious people privately.
NEW VIDEO: My opponent Mark Green explains the radical religious views behind his decision to reject billions of our federal Medicaid expansion dollars – which caused many rural hospitals to close and 300,000 Tennesseans to go without health coverage, including 30,000 veterans. pic.twitter.com/Q7bURIFuGc
— Justin Kanew (@Kanew) September 13, 2018
… every person who came to Christ came to Christ with a physical need… People go to God because of a physical need and they walk away with a spiritual need met. That’s the story of the Gospels. And so government has stepped in, at least in this country, and done all the work for the church. And so the person who’s in need — they look to the government for the answer. Not God. And I think, in that way, government has done an injustice that’s even bigger than just the entitlement — creation of an entitlement welfare state. I think it’s even bigger. And in this setting, I’ll share the story… I think it interrupts the opportunity for people to come to a saving knowledge of who God is.
The video then shows a series of headlines about how Republicans rejected the governor’s proposed Medicaid expansion, shutting down a number of hospitals (especially in rural areas), leaving hundreds of thousands of residents without health insurance.
It’s not exactly a close race in Tennessee’s 7th District. While this is an open seat, Republicans have a tremendous advantage. But Kanew is right to point out that Republicans who vote for him are basically saying they don’t mind people suffering in the name of God. That’s how Green would vote, anyway. His allegiance is to the Christian God, not the people who vote him into office.
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