By Jill Zorn
The latest news flash on health care from Capitol Hill in Washington:
It is now up to “moderate” Republicans to stop the (Un)American Health Care Act.
Thanks to negotiations with the far-right Freedom Caucus, a horrible bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has become truly appalling. What’s new? Although President Trump “promised” during his campaign to leave pre-existing conditions alone. The latest version of the bill would allow states to gut these protections.
Here’s a summary from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities:
Predictions are all over the map about whether some states would decide to do this, but just having it out there as a possibility is extremely chilling.
The latest version of the bill means:
- a return to the pre-ACA bad old days of high risk pools that don’t cover everyone who needs them, of punishing people for having the “audacity” of having a pre-existing condition.
- a state could rip up the essential health benefits and allow insurance policies that basically cover nothing.
- a return to charging women of child bearing age more for health insurance than men, if they want health insurance that covers maternity care.
In other words, this bill is more cruel than ever.
It is so bad that the United Nations sent a five page letter to the Trump administration saying that taking health insurance away from millions of Americans could be a violation of international law.
Here’s another measure of how awful this bill is:
The original version EXEMPTED Congress members and their staffs from the bill! While they may be scurrying to amend that provision, the fact that it was ever there is all you need to know that this is a toxic piece of legislation.
Even if they “fix” this hypocritical provision, do they have the votes to pass this abominable bill? Again, predictions vary. Some articles say that “moderate” Republicans are moving toward supporting the bill, others say they remain skeptical.
When a vote will occur is also contested. Originally there were predictions of a vote on Friday or over the weekend. Now there are reports that the vote may not happen until next week.
And it’s even possible that once again, AHCA will never actually come to a vote in the House, if the whip count shows that at least 23 Republicans are on the record that they will vote no.
But there is no question that Republicans are working hard to pass this bill.
YOU CAN TAKE ACTION TODAY
With so much on the line, it’s time for people in Connecticut to Take Action. Here’s what you can do:
Call your member of Congress
Connecticut’s members of Congress are on record against proposals that gut the Affordable Care Act – but they want to hear from you.
Calls from their constituents give them back up when they oppose this in Congress.
- Thank them for protecting our health care, and tell them to keep at it and do everything they can to stop ACHA!
- Tell them your health care story, and what these changes would mean for you.
How to reach your member of Congress:
(Don’t know who they are? Look it up here!)
Rosa DeLauro: DC Office – (202) 225-3661 | New Haven Office – (203) 562-3718
Elizabeth Esty: DC Office – (202) 225-4476 | New Britain Office – (860) 223-8412
Jim Himes: DC Office – (202) 225-5541 | Bridgeport Office – (203) 333-6600
Joe Courtney: DC Office – (202) 225-2076 | Norwich Office – (860) 886-0139
John Larson: DC Office – (202) 225-2265 | Hartford Office – (860) 278-8888
Contact friends and family in target districts:
Follow this link to see an updated list from The Hill of where key Republicans stand.
Members of Congress on the Undecided/Unclear list need to hear from people in their districts who oppose this bill.
If you have family or friends who live in these states, please contact them today and ask them to call their member of Congress to tell them to vote against this latest attempt to gut the Affordable Care Act.