Democrats took credit Tuesday for Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry’s healthcare bill despite Democrat Gov. Jon Bel Edwards’ previous opposition to the bill and hesitation to sign the legislation.
Last Friday, Louisiana Democrat Gov. Edwards signed Landry’s Health Care Coverage for Louisiana Families Protection Act, which would allow the state insurance commission to open the health insurance market to anyone not covered by an employer-sponsored health insurance plan. Companies could then compete on the state exchange to offer health insurance.
Landry’s health insurance legislation would also protect Americans with preexisting conditions through a “guaranteed benefits pool,” which would protect Americans in a more light-touch fashion compared to many of the onerous Obamacare regulations that raise health insurance premiums and deductibles.
The legislation would become enacted if the Supreme Court were to strike down the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and could serve as a model for Republicans in Congress and across the nation to use when considering future healthcare legislation.
The bill’s passage comes as President Donald Trump has promised that the Republicans will be the party of healthcare. In an interview with Breitbart News Tonight, Landry said that Republicans need to step up and fix health care.
However, despite Landry and Louisiana Republicans’ leadership on passing sweeping healthcare reform, the Democrat Governor’s Association (DGA) credited Edwards for passing Landry’s legislation.
“With Republicans constantly jeopardizing Americans’ health care,
@JohnBelforLA is taking steps to protect Louisianans’ access to quality, affordable care,” the DGA claimed Tuesday.
— Democratic Governors (@DemGovs) June 25, 2019
Landry immediately came out and attacked the DGA for crediting Edwards for the legislation, considering that Edwards attacked the Republican healthcare bill.
“A Democratic campaign arm attempting to give John Bel Edwards credit for my Legislation, developed with Republican leaders, to protect pre-existing healthcare conditions without Obamacare,” Landry charged Tuesday. “A bill he attacked. THAT’S RICH. Thank you for recognizing the bipartisan support.”
A Democratic campaign arm attempting to give John Bel Edwards credit for my Legislation, developed with Republican leaders, to protect pre-existing healthcare conditions without Obamacare. A bill he attacked. THAT'S RICH. Thank you for recognizing the bipartisan support. #lalege https://t.co/IH1a5L60xJ
— Jeff Landry (@JeffLandry) June 25, 2019
Further, in May, Edwards’ executive counsel, Matthew Block, fought with Landry on the legislation.
Gov. Edwards also did not formally announce that he signed the bill last Friday; instead, Edwards announced the first preexisting condition task force.
The DGA’s tweet inflamed controversy so quickly that even members of the Louisiana media called out the DGA’s outlandish claim.
One member of the media noted Edwards called the bill a “fig leaf,” and then after his signing it, Edwards’ staff admitted that the bill “doesn’t do any harm.”
.@LouisianaGov called this bill a "fig leaf" aimed at saving @AGJeffLandry from embarrassment and said "it does not protect adequately those in Louisiana…that have a preexisting health condition." After signing it, his staff said it "doesn't do any harm." #lagov #lalege https://t.co/iEzlsI94y4
— Sam Karlin (@samkarlin) June 25, 2019
Well, this is an interesting claim, since @LouisianaGov trash-talked this bill as offering little protection for people. Republican @AGJeffLandry was the one who promoted the bill. #lalege #lagov https://t.co/SKk0eF9aPY
— Melinda Deslatte (@MelindaDeslatte) June 25, 2019
I believe @LouisianaGov has repeatedly said this legislation, backed by @AGJeffLandry, won't do much to protect anyone's health insurance. Yes, he signed the bill. But he didn't seem happy about signing it. He wouldn't even say he was signing it for awhile. #lalege #lagov https://t.co/tfdbUNvKNg
— Julia O'Donoghue (@JSODonoghue) June 25, 2019
The DGA’s attempt to give Edwards credit for the landmark healthcare bill could also be an attempt to pad Edwards’ role of accomplishments as governor as the Louisiana gubernatorial election heats up.
A June poll found that Rep. Ralph Abraham (R-LA) has tied Gov. Edwards. The survey found that Abraham and Edwards were tied at 45 percent, with ten percent undecided in the tight race.
In a June interview with Breitbart News Saturday, Abraham charged that Edwards only signed the pro-life heartbeat bill because he was “politically motivated” in a tough re-election year given his ties to the pro-abortion universe, including Virginia Democrat Gov. Ralph Northam.
Sean Moran is a congressional reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter @SeanMoran3.