Senator Supportive of Medicaid Expansion to Constituent: Screw You, Dude! (Video)
At a luncheon on Monday in Petoskey, Medicaid-expanding State Senator Howard WALKER (R-Traverse City) said “screw you” to constituent and radio talk show host Brian Sommerfield.
From the video below, Walker made the comment twice during the event Monday after Sommerfield, who co-hosts a show on the Patriot Voice Radio Network, called GOP senators who passed Medicaid expansion “weak Republicans.”
Here is the excerpt of the exchange from Watchdog Wire:
Sommerfield: “One thing that the Republican base has been against is any form of ObamaCare, from the beginning, and to violate the Hastert Rule, again, to get this through … [T]he Emmet County Republican party – the executive committee – voted their disapproval for this and sent you that … This so goes against the base and the people that you stand for … to just totally not only violate it at the base level, but then to violate the Hastert Rule and to have every single Democrat and to pick up a few weak Republicans to get this through, we feel totally violated.”
Walker: “Screw you, as far as weak Republicans, dude.”
Walker: “I said, screw you, as far as calling me a weak Republican.”
Sommerfield: “I am.”
Walker: “The heck with you. I stood by my campaign commitment. And I think I did what was right. It’s a lot easier saying ‘no’ than it was saying ‘yes’ on that. It was a very tough vote.”
Walker, who’s announced that he is not running for re-election, was one of the ‘Gang of Eight’ Republicans who joined with Democrats in the Senate last month to pass Medicaid expansion as part of Obamacare.
Walker said the following on Tuesday night, “I admit I was a little bit coarse. But I think my integrity was being impugned so I was defending myself.”
Walker said that he has apologized to Sommerfield and as far as he is concerned it’s over. “If he wants to keep making an issue out of it, that’s up to him.”
Also in attendance at the meeting was Representative Wayne Schmidt (R-Traverse City) who also voted for Medicaid expansion and is running for Walker’s Senate seat in District 37.
As reported by MIRS News:
Schmidt said while he was surprised by Walker’s comments, he wasn’t disappointed by them.
“Sometimes, people need to be called to the carpet,” Schmidt said.
Asked if he thinks Walker is a “weak Republican,” Schmidt replied, “Not at all, Howard Walker has been a very good Republican, a leader for Northern Michigan and I would be honored to follow in his footsteps.”
As chair of the House Transportation Committee, Representative Schmidt has been the leading voice of Governor Snyder’s push to increase Michigan gas taxes to the highest in the nation.