Sen. Thom Tillis had four opportunities to vote for meaningful health care reform. Instead, he chose to vote along party lines or remain mum. Either way, he embarrassed himself and brought shame to the office that North Carolinians honored him with only a few years ago.
Sen. Tillis claimed to be “studying” the Graham-Cassidy health care bill that Sens. Rand Paul, John McCain, Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski, Ted Cruz and others opposed or indicated they would. They could not gut many of the patient protections guaranteed by the Affordable Care Act, nor deny some 30 million Americans life-saving health care. Presumably, Tillis hoped he could blend in with other GOP legislators in their single-minded “repeal and replace” Obamacare fervor, despite overwhelming evidence that medicine would have been far worse than the disease it portended to cure. In so doing, he has angered one faction by jeopardizing its health and welfare, while also angering his GOP base by revealing that the “repeal and replace” emperor never had clothes.
The good news for Sen. Tillis is that he doesn’t come up for re-election until 2020. The bad news for our junior senator is that the people won’t forget.
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Protest is a ‘right’
Regarding “President’s criticisms spark more protests” (Sept. 25): I became a U.S. citizen on June 8, 1970. I asked two good friends to be sponsors, and I filled out all the necessary paperwork and received my citizenship papers in the District Court of the United States in Newark, N.J. When I see the U.S. flag, I immediately think of all the values I was taught by my parents, teachers and my Boy Scout leaders – to be honest, to be fair in competition, to work hard, to be decent and respectful to all people, just to mention a few.
I appreciate very much those values for which the U.S. flag stands. Some people seem to think that we should be proud of our country and stand for the flag or the national anthem even when we are abusing those values. “America right or wrong,” some people will say. I disagree. If the country is only giving lip service to those higher values, then it is certainly wrong, and people have a constitutional right and an obligation to peacefully protest the abuse of those higher values.
Go modern on testing
Regarding “Tillis should push to bar the VA’s dog experiments” (Sept. 24): I’m appalled that the Department of Veterans Affairs is still performing painful and deadly research on man’s best friend
Last year, the News & Observer featured Warren Casey, who runs a program at the National Institutes of Health to replace outdated animal testing for public health, economic and animal welfare reasons, as a Tar Heel of the Week. The VA should also enter the 21st century and abandon its dog testing in favor of more modern, humane and effective research.