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ICYMI: In #NCSEN Debate, Senator Tillis Can’t Defend His Record Attacking ACA & Blocking Medicaid Expansion

When Senator Tillis was asked about his health care plan in tonight’s North Carolina Senate debate, he was unable to provide a clear answer. Nailing Tillis for his inability to deliver quality, affordable care to North Carolinians, blocking Medicaid expansion, and attacking the Affordable Care Act, Cal Cunningham said “[h]e is attacking my position because he has none.” 


Health care continues to be “front and center” in the North Carolina Senate race, and in tonight’s Nexstar debate — the contrast couldn’t have been more clear.

When it comes to health care, Senator Tillis has been on the wrong side, blocking Medicaid expansion in North Carolina, leaving hundreds of thousands in the coverage gap today. Then he went to Washington and voted to fully or partially repeal the Affordable Care Act 15 times, including taking away protections for the 1.7 million North Carolinians living with pre-existing conditions. 

Cal made a different case, arguing that he will expand health care, including fighting to expand Medicaid, while Senator Tillis continues to stand behind the GOP lawsuit that would dismantle the Affordable Care Act.

While Senator Tillis was the largest recipient of Big Pharma money last year, Cal will work to lower prescription drug costs. Last week, an investigative report from WBTV Charlotte revealed that Senator Tillis received more than $20,000 in campaign contributions from the pharmaceutical industry in December of last year, just two weeks after he had sponsored a drug pricing bill that “omitted a key provision opposed by the pharmaceutical industry that would cap drug prices at inflation.” When Cal asked Senator Tillis what made him so special, he dodged the question, unable to answer why he has caved to his corporate donors and opposed bipartisan efforts to reduce the cost of prescription drugs. 

“North Carolina voters saw tonight that there was only one candidate on the stage that they can trust to protect their health care,” said Kate Frauenfelder, a spokeswoman for Cal Cunningham’s campaign. “It’s clear Senator Tillis can’t defend his failed record when it comes to health care, and has no plan to help North Carolinians gain access to quality, affordable care — even during a global pandemic. North Carolina deserves better.”