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A Texas Republican suggests he’d duel Susan Collins over health care if she were a man

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Last week, the Republican-proposed Obamacare repeal-and-delay bill was doomed when three GOP women senators, all of whom had initially been left out of the health care bill discussions, came forward saying they would not vote to pass it. Now one GOP representative is blaming the ongoing health care confusion on these women senators — and saying that “if it was a guy from south Texas, I might ask him to step outside and settle this Aaron Burr style.”

According to an Associated Press report, in a radio interview Monday, Rep. Blake Farenthold (R-TX) blamed “some female senators from the Northeast” for holding up the health care vote process and said that “if it was a guy from south Texas, I might ask him to step outside and settle this Aaron Burr-style.” Farenthold is referring to the historic duel in which Vice President Burr mortally wounded Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton in 1804.

(The cause of this duel is still debated among academics, but it’s largely attributed to Burr’s desire to get revenge on Hamilton after losing the New York gubernatorial election.)

Sens. Susan Collins (R-ME), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) balked at Senate Republicans’ health care proposal last Monday, saying they would not vote for a repeal bill that delayed enacting a replacement health care policy by two years. As Vox’s Tara Golshan reports, opposing the motion to proceed on the health care vote effectively torpedoed any movement in the Senate behind a repeal-and-delay bill.

Farenthold’s comments, which could be read as both chauvinistic and threatening, are not the first time the Congress member has been connected with inappropriate behavior toward a female colleague. Farenthold was sued in 2014 for sexual harassment and gender discrimination by his former communications director Lauren Greene. (The lawsuit was settled out of court.)

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