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How Testicular Cancer Convinced A Former Republican Staffer To Leave His Party

Before he could realize the value of affordable health care, one Republican campaign staffer had to experience what it’s like to be without it.

Clint Murphy, now a real estate agent from Savannah, Georgia, who’s been involved with Republican campaigns since the 1990s, was diagnosed with testicular cancer in 2000 when he was 25 years old. Four years and four rounds of chemo treatment later — all of which was covered by insurance — Murphy was in remission. Insurance wasn’t a problem in his subsequent political jobs — he worked on John McCain’s election campaign in 2008 and Karen Handel’s Georgia gubernatorial run in 2010 — but when he quit politics in 2010 and entered real estate, he realized just how difficult obtaining insurance with a pre-existing condition could be.

In an interview with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Murphy said he thought after 10 years since his cancer diagnosis, the insurance companies might cut him some slack — instead, they found something else to charge him for.

“I have sleep apnea. They treated sleep apnea as a pre-existing condition. I’m going right now with no insurance,” he told the AJC.

That’s why Murphy had this to say to his Republican friends who oppose Obamacare on Facebook last week: “When you say you’re against it, you’re saying that you don’t want people like me to have health insurance.”

Murphy says Republicans’ insensitivity towards the health care debate has made it so that he can’t in good conscience call himself a Republican anymore — he now identifies as an independent. He doesn’t think Obamacare is perfect, but he thinks it’s a start, and he says he’s tired of Republicans “not even participating in the process” of improving America’s health care system. Still, he says he’s supporting Karen Handel for Georgia Senate, despite her promise to defund Obamacare, because he thinks she can find a way to improve America’s health care system. Handel says she thinks a proposal from Rep. Tom Price (R-GA), which would provide coverage by incentivizing individuals to purchase coverage through tax credits and deductions, would work in place of Obamacare.

Murphy isn’t the only Republican to have a change of heart on the state of American health care recently. Former presidential candidate Newt Gingrich told an audience at the Republican National Committee’s summer meeting last week that if Republicans continue to attack Obamacare but don’t actively work on viable replacements, they’ll lose face among constituents who want to see alternatives to the legislation. Indeed, some constituents are fighting back against representatives who vote to repeal Obamacare — in a town hall in Florida last week, a questioner pressed Rep. Daniel Webster (R-FL) to answer what will happen to people with pre-existing conditions, or to those who “finally have access to health insurance for the first time in nine or ten years” if Obamacare is repealed.

But many Republicans don’t seem to be budging on the Obamacare debate, instead holding firm to their threats to get rid of the legislation. A survey conducted by The Hill found that most prospective GOP presidential candidates either want to defund Obamacare or kill the legislation using another approach, such as attempting to repeal it. Murphy’s story also comes as Republicans in Congress are considering forcing the government to shut down over the funding of the law. For now, though, the legislation is here to stay — which is good news for Murphy, who says he’ll “absolutely” be signing up for standardized insurance when The Affordable Care Act’s health care exchanges open in October.

by Anonymousreply 909/28/2013

Once again, a conservative "doesn't get it" until he's directly affected.

It's almost enough to make me wish every ObamaCare opponent in the Republican Party gets Testicular Cancer.

by Anonymousreply 108/18/2013

My heart weeps.

by Anonymousreply 208/18/2013

What R1 said.

by Anonymousreply 308/18/2013

Even assuming he finally has found empathy and "get it" once the issue affected him personally, he's still a douche.

He's supporting a candidate because she may support a solution which will make sufficient changes to benefit him and his current needs, but of course, not help the vast majority of people.


by Anonymousreply 408/18/2013

I hope that article is right and they don't budge. Then let them get voted out of office next time so we can get some things done.

by Anonymousreply 508/18/2013

Well, duh ... party affiliation wouldn't impact anyone who has a pre-existing condition. No surprise that he'd realize it impacts him too. Hello ??? ..... anyone with a pre-existing condition that doesn't support affordable healthcare has an even bigger pre-existing condition .... stupidity.

by Anonymousreply 608/18/2013

I honestly mean this in the best possible way: I sure how a lot more Republican politicians and staffers get testicular cancer.

by Anonymousreply 709/27/2013

He doesn't "get it". He can call himself "Independent" or whatever. The bottom line is that he's still supporting Republicans who vow to end Obama's Health Care Program.

by Anonymousreply 809/28/2013

Exactly, r8. NONE of them have put forth anything except "Get rid of Obamacare and keep things the way they are". Is that what you people want?

I'm sure than when more of these fucking douchetards get treated under Obamacare, they will suddenly love it and find a way to take credit for it. Mark my words.

It's 1984 IRL in these idiots' minds.

by Anonymousreply 909/28/2013
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