Remember David McKalip, neurosurgeon and head of the anti-health care reform group "Doctors for Patient Freedom"? Probably not. But remember his hilarious "Obama as witch doctor" email forwarding misadventure? How is his pledge to stop advocating against Obamacare going?
Not well! As TPM Muckraker explains, not well at all.
After the fact that McKalip forwarded the objectively racist Obama email to all his tea party friends made it to the internet, McKalip promised to stop "making media appearances on health system reform," which was a nice step, but not as nice as it would've been if he'd announced that he was taking some time off from health care politics to "go fuck myself."
McKalip stopped pretending to be a regular doctor in favor of "patient choice" for slightly less than one month. By mid-August he was giving quotes to reporters about how "Healthcare is a service that people buy in this country." And those reporters failed to identify him as a professional conservative activist. Instead, he was called a "local physician," even though he lives in Florida, and this rally was in Montana. Christ.
And, obviously, he is still going to various meetings of anti-reform people, and speaking at those meetings, and he is still emailing his Tea Party Patriot friends, telling them about how much exciting work he is doing, meeting with members of congress and so on.
But after his recent email to those friends, one of the patriots remembered that McKalip is something of a racist embarrassment to the movement. TPM:
On Saturday evening, an activist named Denise forwarded that message from McKalip to a Tea Party email list. In response, another Tea Partier, Rob Neppell, objected, saying that McKalip's "presence discredits us all with the taint of racism" and arguing that he should be "shunned."
That seems like a fair point. But not to "Consumers for Health Care Choices" founder and conservative think tank "senior fellow" Greg Scandlen!
At that, Scandlen took umbrage. In a response to the group, he called Neppell's message "a slander against one of the best men I know," and argued that McKalip merely "made one mistake. He forwarded an offensive picture of Obama. PERIOD. He didn't create it. He didn't endorse it." (In fact, McKalip wrote "funny stuff" above the picture.)
He was only A LITTLE BIT RACIST. He didn't endorse the idea that Barack Obama is attempting to institute incredibly industry-friendly insurance reforms coupled with subsidized health coverage for people just above the poverty line because he is a stupid African witch doctor with a stupid bone in his stupid nose, he just found an image suggesting that interpretation amusing and then he forwarded it to a listserv. PERIOD.
(Meanwhile: Kent Conrad doesn't want to have a Finance committee vote on health care reform until the CBO can score it, again, based on all the amendments they are voting on, which could take like a week or two, whatever, LET'S NOT BE HASTY. This caught Max Baucus off-guard! Jonathan Cohn thinks the committee will vote on the bill "later in the week, at the earliest," which means Christmas.)