U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill and Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley debated Thursday for the final time before Election Day. The debate between McCaskill, Missouri’s Democratic incumbent, and Hawley, the Republican challenger, opened with a question about current political rhetoric, and it went on to cover issues including immigration and loyalty to President Donald Trump.
But the faceoff between the Senate candidates also veered in directions more closely linked to the economy and fiscal policy.
Affordable Care Act
Hawley attacked the Affordable Care Act and said it was not necessary to covering people with pre-existing conditions. He expressed support for a federal reinsurance pool to help insurers cover costs for the sickest patients.
McCaskill countered that the reinsurance plan wouldn’t cover everyone with pre-existing conditions.
Hawley was asked about his support of coverage for pre-existing conditions in light of Missouri joining a lawsuit in Texas filed against the ACA. He said the suit is “about Obamacare,” and that Obamacare needs to be repealed. He also voiced opposition to the individual mandate that was introduced under the ACA but eliminated under the GOP’s 2017 tax overhaul.
McCaskill said Trump’s tax bill passed in 2017 has not paid for itself as promised, and that Missourians she has talked with “aren’t feeling it.”
Hawley said he would consider tax cuts for the middle class, a group that he said has been saddled with the burden of “outrageous spending in Washington.”