Jim DeMint isn't just anti-Obama, as his comments and the Democratic attack ads would suggest. On the Senate floor Wednesday, DeMint railed against the health insurance industry. But someone should let him know that the feeling isn't mutual. The health care industry provided nearly $50,000 between March and May to the senator's reelection.
This isn't the first time that we've noted the odd support that DeMint is able to carve out, regardless of his politics. Last year, anti-earmark DeMint was able to pull in more than $200,000 from defense companies who won federal contracts through the earmark process he objects to.
In his comments Wednesday, DeMint argued that Democrats don't like his right-wing alternative to health insurance reform, which is believable. But he then tried to say that insurance companies don't like his pitch either. For that, we're going to need some convincing.
"Republicans are not standing with special interests," he said. "Look at the proposals that have been put on the table in the House and Senate by the Democrats... Let's see what party is representing special interests."
Republicans, and DeMint in particular, may not be standing with special interests. But special interests are standing with Republicans and DeMint.
Financial support for his 2010 reelection in the latest Federal Election Commission filing period includes AFLAC, Allstate, the American Insurance Association, the American Society of Anesthesiologists, Amgen, the American Seniors Housing Association, Assurant, Bayer, Brooke Holdings, Doctors' Co. (medical malpractice insurance), Humana, Independent Insurance Agents, MetLife, the National Association of Health Underwriters, the National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies, Pfizer, Travelers Co., U.S. Oncology, and WellPoint.
And he's not the only Republican. A review of donations made by Allstate's Political Action Committee, for example, found that the group supported more Republicans than Democrats in the most recent filing period.