Cochran caught in ObamaCare confusion

Greg Nash

Sen. Thad Cochran (R-Miss.) suggested on the campaign trail he was “glad” to be involved in the ObamaCare effort, before his campaign said he was referring to something else.

In an interview with The Washington Post on Friday, Cochran was asked about the health care law, and the longtime lawmaker facing a tough primary initially appeared to speak fondly of it.

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“This is an example of an important effort by the federal government to help make health care available, accessible and affordable,” he said. “We have probably one of the best health-care systems in the country, in the world, and we’ll need to continue to work to make sure it meets the expectations and needs of the American people. I’m glad to be involved in that effort.”

However, the Post said a Cochran adviser later called to say some on the campaign, including Cochran, had thought the question was about ongoing problems at the Veterans Administration.

At the next campaign stop, Cochran reiterated that he always opposed the law, saying it was not the answer and was not “politically acceptable.”

Cochran is locked in a close race with a primary challenger, attorney Chris McDaniel, just days before voters head to the polls on June 3.

McDaniel’s campaign quickly seized on the comments, sending them out to reporters.

The McDaniel campaign also highlighted comments from Cochran where he said he was considering retiring, but ran again at the urging of others.

On the trail, Cochran received the backing of several GOP party leaders, including the state’s governor, Phil Bryant, and his fellow senator, Sen. Roger Wicker (R).

“There’s nobody more dedicated to looking out for Mississippi’s best interests,” said Wicker.