Colorado Republican Christine Jensen still thinks attacking health care is a good thing.
Repealing health care access, or providing paid family medical leave — the choices couldn’t be any more clear in the race for the Colorado Senate District 20 this campaign season.
The pivotal contest, which could determine what party controls the Senate next year, features two nominees offering up radically different visions, particularly when it comes to health care.
In the District 20 race, Republican candidate Christine Jensen is still clinging to the idea that Obamacare should be repealed — despite its massive unpopularity.
“Polling shows that health care is a top priority for many Americans, and that Democrats are winning among the segment of the electorate most worried about it,” the Washington Post reported this week. “Republicans have found themselves on the defensive when it comes to an issue they used to champion — eliminating President Obama’s signature domestic achievement.”
“What’s needed, Jensen has said, are more politicians like her, with a ‘business mindset,’ who will replace the health care law, called Obamacare, with an unspecified ‘free-market’ alternative,” the Colorado Times Recorder reports.
The Recorder estimates that ending Obamacare “would strip an estimated 400,000 people off the health-insurance rolls in Colorado.”
Jensen has previously attacked Colorado voters for being irresponsible about health care.
“There are some that would much rather drive a nicer car than pay for the health care for their own family,” she has said.
Jensen is facing Democrat Jessie Danielson who, on the opposite end of the health care spectrum, backs the expansion of government efforts to help people in times of need. Specifically, she backs a new family leave plan for the state.
Colorado Democrats have supported the legislation for years. It aims to create a statewide fund for paid family leave benefits for working Coloradans who face a long-term illness or who are caring for a sick family member, a newborn or newly adopted child.
2018 marked the fourth time in five legislative sessions that a Democratic-backed bill to create an employee-funded, paid-leave system failed to make it out of the legislature, thanks to Republican obstruction in the Senate.
As a leader in a local pro-business group called the Jefferson County Business Lobbying, Jensen helped spearhead a campaign to make sure the family leave bill wasn’t passed by the General Assembly.
Like so many Colorado regions, District 20 is growing quickly and it’s being filled up primarily with unaffiliated voters, followed by a healthy portion of new Democrats, and very few new Republicans.
Hillary Clinton won the district by nearly 10 points in 2016.
Health care could be a defining issue deciding what party leads the Senate next year.