Congressman Pete Sessions introduced a resolution Tuesday that he says will protect people with pre-existing conditions.
The protection is a popular part of the Affordable Care Act, a law many Texas voters disagree with and a law that Sessions wants to get rid of.
The Republican congressman first introduced his measure just a little more than a month away from a dogfight of a race to retain his seat.
Sessions’ measure is non-binding. It’s a show of support for protecting people with pre-existing conditions, while he still believes that Obamacare as a whole has failed.
“Pre-existing conditions have always been important to me,” Sessions said. “But in particular, I have a 24-year-old Down Syndrome son. He's a product of God.”
Sessions says it's important for him and other Republicans to state where they stand on fixing on the healthcare system.
“We're trying to make sure we're going to talk about what we're for and they talk about what they're for so no criticism. It’s just which one you’re for,” the congressman said. “And we think people like their employer-funded healthcare, but we recognize that every single person in the marketplace needs a tax credit available.”
Sessions' challenger, Colin Allred is critical of the resolution. The Democratic candidate says it doesn't do anything.
“I think this is the worst kind of Washington politics,” he said. “What his personal motivations are, I don't know. But I think what the people of North Texas need is someone who will actually stand up for them who will vote for him and who won't just try to use political tricks like this in the last minute of an election to get re-elected.”
The race between Sessions and Allred is tight. A New York Times/Sienna College poll, which spoke to only 500 potential voters, has sessions leading Allred 48 to 47.
SMU Political Science Professor Matthew Wilson says Sessions’ measure hits a hot issue for voters in Texas. Some polls show Obamacare is fairly unpopular, though pre-existing conditions protections are popular.
“I think what Pete Sessions is trying to signal is that it may be possible for people to have their cake and eat it,” Wilson said. “I would still expect Sessions to be favorite to hold the seat, but he's definitely going to have to fight down the stretch.”