Kevin McCarthy Expected To Face Primary Challenger

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Juliegrace Brufke Capitol Hill Reporter
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Artist and photographer Joe Aleman is planning to launch a primary bid against House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy for his California House seat next election cycle.

Aleman, who has never held public office, told the Los Angeles Times McCarthy’s handling of repealing Obamacare inspired him to run in 2018. He said he was most concerned about language that would lift bonus caps for insurance executives and the potential for the loss of care of 24 million Americans. GOP lawmakers who supported the American Health Care Act, which passed the House last week, have repeatedly pushed back against critics accusations millions could lose their plans, arguing the repeal of the ACA will lead to more affordable plans, expanded access and lower out-of-pocket costs.

“The whole thing just seems too corrupt, I can’t sleep because of it,” Aleman told the paper. “The injustice of it, just the great injustice of it.”

McCarthy, a Bakersfield resident, is highly popular in his district, having won his last election by 69 percent.

Aleman acknowledged it’s a long shot, adding, “I know God is behind opposing Kevin with me.”

He said he’s worried the changes to health care under the House plan could affect his family personally, citing his wife’s fibromyalgia as a cause for concern.

“The difference between us and the rest of the world is how we treat our poor and those who don’t have anything,” he said. “We’ve lost something in this. This is people, this is people’s babies. The greater ill is for us to show our lack of humanity.”

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