49 Republicans voted for fraud

Here’s the good news: Either due to political considerations or a sincere recognition of the damage done the American poor by gutting Medicaid, four Republican senators were uneasy supporting a broad Obamacare repeal. They seemed to recognize that there was nothing in the proposed “repeal and replace” that would actually reform the health care system. It would simply reduce benefits to those with the greatest need.

Susan Collins, Dean Heller, Lisa Murkowski, Bob Corker, Lindsey Graham and Jerry Moran voted against the amendment. John McCain, Shelly Moore Capito, Lamar Alexander and Rob Portman voted for it.

What’s less encouraging is the fact that some of those same senators –– Graham, Corker and Moran –– voted for the “clean” repeal bill that would have scrapped Obamacare entirely without a replacement.

Graham, Corker and Moran have all held themselves up as sincere seekers of common-sense solutions to health care. Unlike some of their radical right-wing colleagues –– Ted Cruz, Mike Lee, Rand Paul –– they have expressed an interest in a solution that doesn’t gut basic protections or leave millions without coverage. And yet, these three men voted for the most reckless possible legislative outcome: A total repeal of Obamacare would have led to 35 million losing coverage.

I was tempted to think some of these guys had regained their sense of decency and sense when the “skinny bill” was unveiled. Graham, the proverbial adult in the room, described the 8-page bill as a “fraud” and a “disaster.”

But hours later Graham, along with a bunch of other supposedly sensible Republicans –– Moran, Corker, Heller, Capito –– voted for the “fraud.”

In what political context is supporting something that you admit to be a farce good politics? How can an elected official get away with that?

I hope that all of the Sunday TV shows that for years have extended an open invitation to Graham to pontificate will ask him to explain why he voted to support fraud.