I watched the final Senate vote on repealing Obamacare Thursday night. And the moment that John McCain looked Mitch McConnell right in the eye and turned his thumb down (indicating that he voted NO on the final GOP plan to repeal) was dramatic and historic -- and I was proud that he chose to do the right thing for the American people instead of just toeing the party line. He deserves the credit he has received for defeating that odious bill.
But McCain did not do that alone. In fact, he could not have done it at all if not for two other Republicans who fought for sanity in the repeal effort from the very start of the process. Those two made it clear from the start that they would not vote for any plan that took insurance away from the people in their own states or in the country as a whole. And because of that politically courageous stand, they endured massive pressure from the White House and Republican leadership.
Those two Republicans are Lisa Murkowski of Alaska (pictured above left) and Susan Collins of Maine (pictured above right). Without their courageous and passionate stand for doing the right thing, McCain's historic moment would have been meaningless. For me, they are the true heroes of this moment.
I do not normally support these two Republican senators. While they are not in the teabagger-trumpista insane wing of the Republican Party, they are conservatives and normally vote for a conservative agenda. But I have to admire their political bravery regarding the health care issue.