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Florida Sen. Rick Scott backs Donald Trump in revived push to repeal Obamacare

More than 3 million Floridians will lose their health insurance if Scott and Trump succeed.

By Jesse Valentine - November 30, 2023
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Senator Rick Scott (R-FL) speaks to media at the U.S. Capitol, in Washington, D.C., on Thursday, September 29, 2022. (Graeme Sloan/Sipa USA)(Sipa via AP Images)
Senator Rick Scott (R-FL) speaks to media at the U.S. Capitol, in Washington, D.C., on Thursday, September 29, 2022. (Graeme Sloan/Sipa USA)(Sipa via AP Images)

On Nov. 25, former President Donald Trump revived the idea of killing the Affordable Care Act, writing on his Truth Social website: “The cost of Obamacare is out of control, plus, it’s not good Healthcare. I’m seriously looking at alternatives.” Florida Republican Sen. Rick Scott’s campaign was quick to cheer on that effort.

In response to Trump’s comments, P​​riscilla Ivasco, Scott’s communications director, told Politico that Scott was a “leading voice in calling out Obamacare for failing Americans” and that he was “looking forward to working alongside [Trump] when he wins in 2024.”

Scott was one of the chief architects of Trump’s 2017 push to repeal Obamacare. In the months preceding Trump’s inauguration, Scott was reportedly in constant contact with Trump and Rep. Tom Price (R-GA), Trump’s pick to lead the Department of Health and Human Services, in working on an Obamacare replacement.

“I want to have a repeal as quickly as we can get it done,” Scott said in December 2016. “Day one would be nice for me.”

Those plans failed thanks to a groundswell of support from Americans who were concerned about losing their health care if Obamacare were eliminated.

According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, more than 3 million Floridians with preexisting conditions could lose their health care coverage if Obamacare were repealed.

Scott has targeted other safety net programs as well. In 2022, he introduced the “Rescue America” plan, which would have required all federal programs to be reauthorized by Congress every five years, including Medicare and Social Security.

As the governor of Florida from 2011 to 2019, Scott opposed Medicaid expansion made available under the Obamacare law. Current Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis has also refused to opt in to the program. An estimated 789,800 uninsured Floridians would benefit from Medicaid expansion.

Former Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell, who is seeking the Democratic nomination to challenge Scott, is confident voters will unite against the latest push to repeal Obamacare.

“This is an issue that will activate our voters in Florida to come out and vote,” she told Politico. “Bring it on; let’s talk about this issue.”

A spokesperson for Scott did not immediately respond to a request for comment for this story.


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