Press Release: Graham-Cassidy-Heller-Johnson Bill is Latest Effort to Destroy America’s Health Care, Blow a Hole in State Budgets

For Immediate Release: September 13, 2017
Contact: Robyn Shapiro, robyn.shapiro@berlinrosen.com, 202-800-7407
 
Graham-Cassidy-Heller-Johnson Bill is Latest Effort to Destroy America’s Health Care, Blow a Hole in State Budgets
 
Washington, DC – Health Care for America Now (HCAN) co-directors Ethan Rome and Margarida Jorge released the following statement after Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Bill Cassidy (R-LA), Dean Heller (R-NV) and Ron Johnson (R-Wisconsin) released their latest repeal bill:
 
“Republicans can dress up the Graham-Cassidy-Heller-Johnson repeal bill however they want, but it’s essentially the same as the previous terrible plans that Americans have overwhelmingly rejected and that failed on the Senate floor. Just like every other repeal bill Republicans have attempted to jam through Congress this year, this proposal will wreck America’s health care, blow up state budgets, take health care away from millions, and gut protections for people with pre-existing conditions. This bill will eviscerate Medicaid, eliminate the tax credits of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and rob states of precious health care funds.
 
“It’s time to end the desperate, reckless and partisan attempts to repeal the ACA. Instead, Congress should work to strengthen our health care markets and increase access to affordable care, as the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions has started to do with its ongoing bipartisan hearings.”

 

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Health Care for America Now (HCAN) is the national grassroots coalition that ran a $60 million five-and-a-half year campaign from 2008-2013 to pass, protect, and promote the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and protect Medicare and Medicaid. HCAN has come back together to fight the Republicans’ all-out effort to take away America’s health care and put people at the mercy of the health insurance companies again.

Press Release: Health Care for America Now on McCain’s Health Care Repeal Flip

For Immediate Release: September 6, 2017
Contact: Morgan Williams Grogan, morgan.williams@berlinrosen.com, 202-836-9890

Health Care for America Now on McCain’s Health Care Repeal Flip

Washington, DC – Health Care for America Now (HCAN) co-directors Ethan Rome and Margarida Jorge released the following statement in response to Senator John McCain’s (R-AZ) announcement of support for the Affordable Care Act (ACA) repeal legislation put forth by Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Bill Cassidy (R-LA):

“The Graham-Cassidy repeal bill is as bad or worse than every other GOP repeal bill and Senator John McCain’s flip-flop is an outrage. This isn’t even a sheep in wolf’s clothing. Just like every other repeal bill Republicans have attempted to jam through Congress this year, this proposal will wreck America’s health care and blow up state budgets. You can’t block grant the health care of millions of Americans and call that a health plan.

“This plan would have the same life-threatening and devastating consequences as the GOP repeal bill that Senator McCain voted against and that Americans have overwhelmingly rejected. Under the Graham-Cassidy bill, millions of Americans will lose care and millions more will lose critical consumer protections.

“Instead of offering up more of the same, Congress should work to strengthen our health care markets and increase access to affordable care, as the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions has started to do with its hearings this week and next.”

 

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Health Care for America Now (HCAN) is the national grassroots coalition that ran a $60 million five-and-a-half year campaign from 2008-2013 to pass, protect, and promote the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and protect Medicare and Medicaid. HCAN has come back together to fight the Republicans’ all-out effort to take away America’s health care and put people at the mercy of the health insurance companies again.

HCAN in the News — Highlights from State Partners, June-July

 

In June and July, HCAN’s campaign focused on generating sustained and escalating activity across the states in order to drive a national narrative and to influence key legislative targets to oppose proposals to repeal the ACA and restructure Medicaid. HCAN and HCANEF’s state partners used public education, advocacy and earned media to increase pressure by contrasting devastating healthcare cuts that impact real people with billions in tax breaks for the rich, insurance and prescription drug companies. Through a combination of tactics including rapid response, organized direct actions, and in some cases civil disobedience, HCAN partners continued to engage real impacted people and mobilized constituents to confront lawmakers where it matters most: in their districts. Below are some highlights of HCAN and HCANEF activity during this period.

ALASKA

Faith in Public Life and allies worked on a number of activities in Alaska, including recruiting a member of the clergy to pen this op-ed that was published right before the final repeal vote.

Faith leaders delivered a moral declaration to Sen. Murkowski urging her to reject the BRCA and got good local coverage on TV.

ARIZONA

HCAN’s partner LUCHA joined a protest outside of Senator Flake’s office in June that got press:

LUCHA staff and members also traveled to DC in early July to protest on Capitol Hill, risking arrest during an occupation outside McConnell’s office with allies from Center for Popular Democracy, HousingWorks, NNU, and Positive Women’s Network. The demonstration got press in DC and back in the state:

ARKANSAS

For the June 21st day of action ACO, HCAN’s Arkansas partner, organized about 50 people for rally in front of Boozman’s and Cotton’s offices including speakers Reverend Howard Gordon, Toney Orr, pastor and union organizer; Blake Ross, President of Arkansas Young Democrats; Camille Richoux, President of Arkansas NOW and public health worker; Lewis Shepherd, Medicaid recipient; Jerome Pitts, Arkansas Works recipient. After chanting “Don’t end it! Mend it! Don’t take away our health care!” speeches and a ceremony to put lipstick on the pig, the group marched to deliver with about 2,000 post cards and the pig to Boozman’s and Cotton’s offices. Press coverage below:

In July, ACO escalated to sit-ins at Boozman & Cotton’s office on the July 6th Day of Action. Around 80 people attended over the course of four hours. The event was sponsored by more than ten organizations. ACO member, Lewis Sheppard, is holding Medicaid Not Millionaires sign in a wheelchair is featured in the first clips below.

ACO also escalated their tactics, risking in DC to ratchet up pressure. The arrests got attention back home.

14 Arkansans Arrested in DC Health Care Protest

Arkies Again Arrested Protesting Health Legislation

Arkansas Senators Prep Healthcare Vote, 2018 Challengers & Demonstrators Oppose

Boozman’s a yes on ruination of Obamacare. Cotton dancing still.

CALIFORNIA

Health Access California has continued their #Fight4OurHealth campaign over the past few months, engaging Senator Kamala Harris, advocates, partners and impacted people in holding CA Congressional delegation members accountable for voting to repeal the ACA. Since both Senators in CA fully oppose repeal, Health Access recruited volunteers to generate calls into states with moderate Republican targets to educate constituents about the repeal proposals and encourage those constituents to reach out directly to Senators with their concerns.

DELAWARE

DACA organized an event to raise awareness about the attacks on healthcare in June that got good coverage.

FLORIDA

Organize Florida, HCAN’s partner in Orlando has been active over this summer in organizing public education events to help their members and the public understand where Senator Rubio and Governor Rick Scott stand on the federal proposals to dismantle healthcare.

On June 13th and 14th, Organize Florida held two events in Tampa to educate the public about the impact of federal proposals to gut healthcare on Florida:

  • Tuesday, June 13th, Organize Florida Tampa held a panel discussion focused on health care that was live-streamed over facebook (link here). Medicaid ACA Subsidy recipients who have physical disabilities discussed the need for funding of the programs and the threat to their quality of life if the Senate GOP cut the programs.Speakers included: Michael Phillips, Tampa Activist; Karen Clay, Org FL member and Chair of FAAST; Brian Phillips, Brother of Michael Phillips; Nicole Coratti, Kiwanis International; Olivia Babis, Suncoast Center for Independent Living.
  • Wednesday, June 14th Organize Florida along with allies Florida Voices for Health and For Florida’s Future organized a press conference at the office of Senator Nelson and was live-streamed on Facebook (link here).  Speakers described how the AHCA and the Senate GOP bills will hurt them. The speakers urged Senators Rubio and Nelson to commit to no cuts to health care.

Organize Florida organized a “Billionaires for Trump” event for HCAN’s June 21st day of action during which activists staged satire play outside Senator Rubio’s office to highlight the fact that by repealing the Affordable Care Act, the 400 wealthiest American’s will receive millions of dollars in tax breaks. The play was followed by four community members who shared their personal stories about how would be impacted by Congressional efforts to repeal healthcare and cut Medicaid. Press coverage below.

In addition, a longtime Organize Florida member who tweeted about his story was interviewed on the Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell on MSNBC. See clip: Mother and son: Medicaid isn’t about politics, it’s about lives.

Stephanie Porta, Organize Now Executive Director was interviewed on June 25 as well:

Then, on June 28th, Organize Florida continued to drive the narrative about cuts to Medicaid and tax breaks for millionaires with “Medicaid Not Millionaires” press events in Orlando and Tampa that got good coverage below.

ILLINOIS               

HCAN partner IL Citizen Action along with allies organized a demonstration outside a $10k plate GOP fundraiser in Chicago that included all the Republican members of the IL Congressional delegation last Monday. In an interesting twist, Governor Rauner, who the activists have been pressuring to take a position against the Republican repeal bill and restructuring of Medicaid that will devastate the state, cancelled his appearance at the event.

Following the event, Illinois Citizen Action worked on the opinion pieces below that continue to focus on Rauner’s failure to weigh in in defense of Illinois and the impact on GOP federal health care proposals.

Then, on June 23, IL Citizen Action & Indivisible organized a large health care action that got coverage on the front page of the Chicago Tribune. This focus on Rauner has helped generate great clips also like this one:

Then, after rallies, letters, petition drives and non-stop press outreach, on July 18th Citizen Action of Illinois and their allies escalated to organize faith leaders, including Citizen Action’s Co-Executive Director William McNary, for a vigil to pray for Rauner calling on divine forces to move the Governor to pay attention to his constituents.

Citizen Action IL also worked with allies to help plan messaging for this action. It’s significant because the Gov. has fired and replaced a huge percentage of his staff with folks from the Koch-funded so-called think tank.

INDIANA

On Monday, June 19th, HCAN partner IndyCAN! worked with AFSCME to organize a tele-press conference featuring experts, impacted people and clergy that focused on how the Trump Administration’s sabotage of the ACA is creating pressure for insurers to hike rates. The press conference got good coverage below.

Later in June, INDYCAN leaders organized a die-in in downtown Indianapolis as part of the June 28th day of action that got great television coverage locally. See below:

IndyCAN also worked behind the scenes to support this op-ed from the CEO of St. Vincent Health in Inside Business.

IOWA

HCAN’s Iowa partner, the Main Street Alliance, worked with leader Chris Peters to publish this op-ed in June: http://www.thegazette.com/subject/opinion/guest-columnists/small-businesses-cant-afford-political-games-20170619.

This is a follow up to a great LTE that was published the following week.

In June, an MSA leader Mike Regan, who was also active in passing the ACA eight years ago, joined an Iowa press conference to oppose repeal.

MAINE

In Maine, Main Street Alliance Member Emilyu Ingwersen published this op-ed in June that appeared a couple of outlets:

MARYLAND

HCAN Partner Progressive Maryland organized an event outside Rep. Harris’ district office in Salisbury this past week.

Progressive Maryland and allies have also been working on pushing their Republican Governor (Hogan) to speak up against federal threats to healthcare.

Progressive Maryland, like other HCAN partners also focused a lot on moving Governor Hogan, a Republican, to weigh in in opposition to repeal and the negative consequences of proposals to cap Medicaid. They were ultimately successful getting the Governor to join a bipartisan letter rejecting the “skinny” repeal bill in the senate.

MINNESOTA

HCAN partner Take Action MN organized an event outside the office of Representative Lewis for the national day of action. This event is part of the on-going effort to hold Lewis accountable for supporting the House repeal bill that would put health care at risk for hundreds of thousands of Minnesotans. TV coverage of the event below.

Take Action MN also got great coverage on the June 21st for an event they organized locally:

HCAN partner Main Street Alliance also generated this great Op Ed in the state:

ISAIAH and allies held a great event on July 12 that integrated the state and local message on Medicaid. Good coverage here:

MISSOURI

HCAN’s partner Jobs With Justice organized a sign on letter from MO doctors that was published in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch on June 23rd.

The letter was a follow up to an earlier piece that appeared on June 17th:

Jobs with Justice and allies also organized multiple events, including a die-in that got good media attention. See below:

On June 29th, protesters also demonstrated outside Senator Blunt’s St. Louis office and got TV coverage below:

Finally, HCAN partners organized activists to attend Senator Claire McCaskill’s town hall to demonstrate support for the Senator’s continued role in championing Medicaid. The meeting focused heavily on the GOP proposals on healthcare and impact on Missourians. One of the more telling moments at the Town Hall itself was when Sen. McCaskill asked anyone who supported the current GOP bill to raise their hand, and not even those sporting their ‘Make America Great Again’ gear raised a hand!

NEVADA

NARAL Pro-Choice Nevada has been doing tremendous work over months to put pressure on Senator Heller to oppose the Medicaid cuts that would devastate the state and disproportionately hurt women. In July, they stepped up even further with calls, actions and demonstrations like this one just days before the vote:

NEW HAMPSHIRE

Partners in New Hampshire led by HCAN ally Granite State Progress with participation from Granite State Organizing Project (GSOP) and Rights & Democracy NH have spent a good part of the summer pushing Republican Governor Sununu to speak out against healthcare repeal, ultimately with pretty successful results.

Partners organized a vigil in June outside the statehouse calling for Governor Sununu to speak out against the proposed healthcare bill that 35 people attended. Holding the vigil by his back door paid off –the Governor both saw the activists and their message and actually spoke with attendees.

In late June Governor Sununu became the latest Republican Governor to oppose the Republican proposals to repeal ACA and cap Medicaid.

Granite State Organizing Project also generated these great letters to the editor in the state.

NEW JERSEY

New Jersey Organizing Project (NJOP) leader Joanne Robinson wrote and published this op-ed in early June relating her person story about how Medicaid helped her recover from addiction after attending a town hall meeting in which Representative MacArthur asserted that no one would lose coverage under the Republican health care proposal he supported in Congress: 

New Jersey Citizen Action also challenged MacArthur in the piece featured here in the Burlington County Times, noting that the Representative gets a lot of support for Trump while claiming to be a moderate. NJCA has been leading weekly demonstrations outside MacArthur’s office.

 

NEW YORK

HCAN’s lead partner Citizen Action of New York has continued to drive activity, public education and create accountability for House members upstate to voted to support the AHCA. On June 5th, CANY’s Jess Wisneski was interviewed in the clip below, urging New Yorkers to take on President Trump’s agenda, including plans to dismantle healthcare:

For the June 21st Day of Action, CANY’s upstate team organized an event in Binghamton in which activists linked hands in front of Lourdes Hospital to send a message about the impact of ACA repeal and changes to Medicaid. Good clip below.

 

In the week leading up to the action, the story below appeared featuring CANY activist James St. Jacques who got healthcare thanks to Medicaid Expansion. James also spoke at an event in Albany on Thursday, June 22nd in reaction to the release of the Senate draft bill that would end the Medicaid expansion.

On June 22nd, CANY and statewide allies organized a rapid response press conference in response to the release of the Senate bill. Advocates were joined by state legislative leaders, people with stories including James St. Jacques, featuring in the clips above, along with healthcare providers. See the press coverage below:

On June 28th, CANY coordinated vigils for the HCAN day of action in upstate NY and generated some attention including this clip:

On July 8th, CANY and partners were back it again in Binghamton and Long Island with more events targeting Tenney this time and targeting Faso. 

NORTH CAROLINA

Our HCAN partner Action NC placed this op-ed by staffer Kevin Rogers in mid-June (below) as well as a number of Letters to the Editor from members that are listed below.

In addition, Action NC worked with partner Progress NC on logistics and turnout for a flotilla (two rented boats) that sailed up to the back of the Senator Tillis’ yard on Lake Norman in Charlotte in an effort to confront the Senator and challenge his support on healthcare repeal. See the coverage below.

OHIO

MVOC, HCAN’s Ohio partner, helped lead the passage of a resolution opposing repeal locally in the Youngstown City Council. Clip here:  

Earlier in the month, HCAN partner Faith in Public Life worked with Reverend William Barber and clergy from around the state to organize a rally with over 50 clergy and 150 people of faith in Columbus, Ohio. The interfaith group (which included Evangelicals and Catholics) held a rally and marched from the Ohio Statehouse steps to Sen. Portman’s office. In addition to speeches from Rev. Barber, prominent clergy from Columbus and Cincinnati, doctors, and impacted people, four delegations of clergy delivered to Sen. Portman’s office a stack of bibles, each stuffed with the health care stories of Ohioans.  The rally was live streamed on FaceBook with over 221 shares and 58,000 people reached.

Protesters at another vigil organized late in June at the courthouse in Warren by the local PICO affiliate and HCAN partner also got coverage with a quote from an impacted person making the powerful headline below.

In Cinncinnatti, this great July event featured leaders connected with Faith in Public Life and children with pre-existing conditions:

OREGON

Unite Oregon and allies staged a protest at Walberg’s Medford office that yielded great press below in June.

HCAN partner Oregon MSA also got coverage in this piece:

PENNSYLVANIA

HCAN partners led by Pennsylvania Health Access Network, POWER, POWER NE organized great 24-hour events in June that were bolstered by the participation of Reverend William Barber of the Moral Mondays Movement and Repairers of the Breach. Thanks to Faith in Public Life for help with engaging clergy in this event and to SEIU and CPD partners among others for sending attendees to support the vigil. Hundreds of folks came out across Pennsylvania to participate in 24 hour vigils in 6 out of 7 of Senator Toomey’s offices.

For the kickoff with Reverend Barber over 300 people packed the sidewalk outside of Senator Toomey’s office. In Pittsburgh over 100 people came to the kickoff. Dozens of impacted consumers spent the night at all of the offices.

NATIONAL:

PHILADELPHIA (Clergy led, headlined by Rev. Barber)

PITTSBURGH

WILKES-BARRE

ALLENTOWN

ERIE

HARRISBURG

In addition to the event, PHAN, POWER (& POWER NE) coordinated on a clergy sign-on letter to PA Senators Toomey & Casey signed by 55 Catholic clergy including the Sisters of St. Joseph-Baden, women and religious leaders in Catholic institutions.

The following week, PICO affiliate POWER NE organized a great “Medicaid Not Millionaires” Rally outside of Toomey’s Allentown District office:

TENNESSEE

TNCA joined allies for a June press conference and action in which they placed tombstones on the

lawn of the Senate offices to represent kids, veterans others directly impacted by cuts proposed at the federal level.

In early July, TNCA joined with the TN Justice Center to highlight the impact of repeal prposals and cuts to Medicaid on rural states like TN with a Tractorcade action that got some good media attention. See clips below;

TEXAS

HCAN partner Texas Organizing Project focused their energy on lifting voices of impacted people as well as pushing a number of targets including Senators Cruz and Cornyn to stop their repeal efforts.

UTAH

MHAction is HCAN’s newest state partner. It’s an organization that mobilizes people who live in manufactured home communities to advocate on issues that impact them. Shirlene Stoven, MHAction Core Team Leader published this great piece on the impact of proposed Medicaid cuts in June:

VERMONT

Rights And Democracy VT (RADVT) held a State House rally in late June with over 100 people turning out to hear voices from diverse key constituencies (nursing, faith leadership, patients, unions) and calling on Governor Scott to resist the national GOP proposal. Speakers included Mari Cordes, RN and RAD leader speaker (she emceed event), Brenda Patoine a beneficiary of the ACA, and Reverend Earl Kooperkemp.

Mary Gerisch, RAD VT leader from Bennington, appearing as one of the demonstrators at the beginning of this NBC nightly news clip:

RAD VT also worked on a great coalition sign on letter to Governor Scott, urging him to speak out against federal repeal proposals which ultimately was successful when Scott signed onto a bipartisan letter with 9 other governors to oppose the “skinny” repeal vote in the Senate.

VIRGINIA

Virginia Organizing (VO), HCAN’s partner in VA held a rally in Charlottesville calling on Senators Warner and Kaine to protect Virginians against repeal and changes to Medicaid.

Virginia Organizing also placed a series of letters to the editor lifting up the voices of impacted people opposing repeal of the ACA and Medicaid cuts.

WASHINGTON

HCAN partner WACAN! held a successful action for the day of action outside of the Federal Building to educate the public about the federal attacks on healthcare. Here are some pictures. They delivered 1000 handwritten letters to Senator Cantwell’s and Murray’s staff. Coverage here:

In addition, WACAN published this article from Gerald Hankerson, their policy director who is also president of the NAACP:

After WACAN!’s action on Wednesday, the group participated in a press conference with Senator Cantwell at Virginia Mason, a local hospital. WACAN Member George Poston from Auburn shared his story on how Medicaid saved his life after he lost his job as a chef and found out he had life threatening blood clots in his leg shortly thereafter.

In addition, the group generated this Op Ed targeting Rep Reichert:

Earlier this month, WACAN! members organized a protest our side a fundraiser attended by Representative Cathy McMorris Rodger, the lone Member of Congress from Washington to vote for the ACHA. McMorris Rodgers has refused to meet with her constituents in Spokane because she knows her district opposes the AHCA. On June 1st, McMorris Rodgers hosted a $5000 a plate fundraiser with a Microsoft PAC on the other side of the state. Washington CAN member Bonnie Roberts traveled from Spokane to confront McMorris Rodgers while over 100 protesters demonstrated outside of the fundraiser. Washington CAN members Joelle Craft and George Poston also led chants, emceed the program, and shared their stories about how the repeal of the ACA would impact them. This video highlights Bonnie’s story:

WEST VIRGINIA

HCAN partner WVCAG continues to work with state allies on pressuring Senator Capito to oppose repeal. The group helped generated the op-ed below:

Activists and impacted people also took a bus DC to share health care stories with Senator Capito & Senator Manchin on June 20.

Earlier in the month, on June 16th, the group held a rally against AHCA in Charleston calling on Senator Capito to oppose the bill.

On Monday, June 26th, WVCAG and allies went back to Capito’s office to keep up the pressure, urging her to reject the repeal of the ACA and gutting Medicaid. Six constituents sat in at Senator Capito’s Charleston, W.Va. office all day. This clip includes live stream of arrests and rally:

WVCAG & Allies + Ohio allies held action on Williamstown bridge calling on Capito & Portman jointly to reject repeal and restructuring of Medicaid. Over 100 demonstrators gathered on the bridge from both states. Video: https://www.facebook.com/WVCAG/videos/1392070840873565/.

WVCAG and coalition partners worked with allies in the faith community in early July to keep the pressure on Senator Capito. Great events including his one led by the interfaith coalition in the state:

WISCONSIN

Citizen Action of Wisconsin also connected the federal fight to protect healthcare and Medicaid with their state work to advance healthcare and protect Medicaid that focuses on WI Governor Scott Walker:

in early Judy, Citizen Action of Wisconsin held a press event at the Wisconsin State Capitol to introduce a Medicaid (“BadgerCare”) “Public Option” bill. Approximately 30 citizens participated together with Citizen Action of Wisconsin Executive Director Robert Kraig, five state representatives, and two state senators, including the bill’s author, Rep. Eric Genrich, who is also a Citizen Action member. Citizens with signs advocating for the bill and for the protection and improvement of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) flanked the speakers throughout the event. This event followed a recent state poll done showing the majority of the Wisconsin public wants to improve not repeal the ACA, so this presented an opportunity.

In Madison on July 5th with SEIU, AFL-CIO and others, Citizen Action members rallied to oppose Trumpcare, to tell Senator Ron Johnson to stay FIRM in his opposition to the Senate Health Care Bill and to call for Medicare for all instead. ~70 people attended, with limited media interviews

CapTimes (Jul 3, 2017) As Ron Johnson continues to negotiate Senate health care bill, progressives plan Wednesday rally http://host.madison.com/ct/news/local/govt-and-politics/election-matters/as-ron-johnson-continues-to-negotiate-senate-health-care-bill/article_22b40c1f-023b-5616-af0a-3f2afed0f580.html

Action’s Western WI Organizing Cooperative held a rally at an intersection in Eau Claire to call for an end to Trumpcare and to support the launch of the BadgerCare Public Option bill. Members rallied, received TV coverage and urged people to keep calling Senator Ron Johnson relentlessly to keep delaying the vote as well as urging to vote no.

Wisconsin Citizen Action also placed this Op-ed in the largest weekly newspaper in Wisconsin, the Shepherd Express, as a featured story on how bad the Senate health bill actually is.

The following day, more activists organized a follow up action outside Johnson’s office.

People Gather at Sen. Ron Johnson’s office to protest Senate health care proposal 

NBC 26 (Jul 6, 2017) Angry over health care plan, protestors stage sit-in at Sen. Johnson’s office 

NATIONAL CLIPS

HCAN

CENTER FOR POPULAR DEMOCRACY

FAITH IN PUBLIC LIFE

Faith leaders including Repairers of the Breach, a progressive faith organization run by the Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II, and Reverend Jennifer Butler of FPL were joined by faith leaders from around the nation yesterday for an event at the Capitol where the leaders where then arrested after taking turns making remarks and calling up Senators to stop their repeal effort.

“This is not a health care bill,” said Rev. Jennifer Butler of the liberal religious group Faith in Public Life. “It is a death bill. And we are here to urge life. We stand for life, not death.”

Faith in Public Life Executive Director Jennifer Butler published this piece in religious outlet RNS:

MAIN STREET ALLIANCE

Nevada’s Small Businesses Would Suffer Under Senate Health Care Plan

The Hill, Op Ed by MSA Director Amanda Ballantyne & Rhett Buttle: Senate Health Bill Gives Small Businesses a Splitting Headache, 6/29

Repeal-and Replace: Amanda Ballantyne was also quoted in this piece that appeared in a local Kansas outlet

PEOPLE’S ACTION

Leeann Hall, People’s Action Co-Executive Director, Highlights Rural Impact & Rx Drug Gouging in two great pieces that appeared in numerous outlets:

Rural Communities Have the Most to Lose With Health Care Repeal

People’s Action President Jay Johnson, highlights the impact of Republican repeal proposals on black lives in a piece that appeared all over:

 

 

HCAN In The News: Democracy Now! – “Far from Over”: Senate Narrowly Defeats Obamacare Repeal, But More Attacks on Healthcare Loom

In an stinging defeat for the Republican Party and President Trump, the Senate voted by a slim margin—49 to 51—against the repeal of the Affordable Care Act. As the bill was defeated, protesters outside the Capitol cheered and chanted “Yes, we did!” The loss was a stinging defeat for President Donald Trump and for Republicans who have spent seven years vowing to repeal and replace Obamacare. The so-called skinny repeal of Obamacare would have eliminated the individual mandate and the employer mandate, that requires certain businesses to provide health insurance to employees. We speak with Margarida Jorge of Health Care for America Now.


Source: https://www.democracynow.org/2017/7/28/far_from_over_senate_narrowly_defeats

Press Release: Senate Victory is a Testament to Incredible Power of Grassroots Pressure

For Immediate Release: Friday, July 28, 2017
Contact: Robyn Shapiro, robyn.shapiro@berlinrosen.com, 202-800-7407 

Senate Victory is a Testament to Incredible Power of Grassroots Pressure

The Fight Continues to Beat Efforts to End Medicaid and Medicare to Give Huge Tax Breaks to the Wealthy

Washington, D.C. – Margarida Jorge and Ethan Rome, co-directors of Health Care for America Now, released the following statement following the Senate’s failure Friday to pass the so-called “Skinny Repeal” bill of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). 

“This victory is an extraordinary testament to the people across the country who rose up and refused to be silent in the face of such a grave threat to America’s health care. Thanks to incredible organizing and relentless pressure from constituents, we defeated this bill – a bill many thought was unstoppable. 

“Every single repeal bill the Senate has considered would have the same devastating effects – stripping health care from millions and making people pay more for worse care – all in the name of huge tax breaks for the wealthy and drug and insurance companies. 

“Just as Congressional Republicans were willing to pass any repeal bill they could muster the votes for, regardless of the damage it would cause, we know they will continue to come after Medicaid and Medicare to pay for huge tax cuts for the wealthy and big corporations. We have not seen the last of their efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act. But they haven’t seen the last of us either. We will be there fighting back every step of the way. We will stop them in their tracks.

“We will hold Members of Congress accountable for their votes to destroy America’s health care and lift up the those who were willing to take a stand – starting with dozens of events across the country this Saturday as part of “Our Lives on the Line” day of action. People from red states and blue states alike have made very clear that they do not want Congress messing with their health care.

“Now is the time for the Trump Administration and Republican leadership to abandon their efforts to sabotage health care. Now is the time to work in a bipartisan way to expand access to affordable care. And it’s past time to fully fund the Cost Sharing Reduction payments.” 

 

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Health Care for America Now (HCAN) is the national grassroots coalition that ran a $60 million five-and-a-half year campaign from 2008-2013 to pass, protect, and promote the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and protect Medicare and Medicaid. HCAN has come back together to fight the Republicans’ all-out effort to take away America’s health care and put people at the mercy of the health insurance companies again.

Press Release: Republicans Put Partisanship Above Leadership, Health Care of Constituents with ‘Skinny’ Repeal Plan

For Immediate Release: Thursday, July 27, 2017
Contact: Robyn Shapiro, robyn.shapiro@berlinrosen.com, 202-800-7407 

Republicans Put Partisanship Above Leadership, Health Care of Constituents with ‘Skinny’ Repeal Plan

Washington, D.C. – Margarida Jorge and Ethan Rome, co-directors of Health Care for America Now, released the following statement ahead of the expected Senate vote on the yet-to-be-written “skinny” repeal bill.

“Senate Republicans are acting more like high school students who have forgotten to finish their homework than leaders who vowed to serve the American people. Their scrambling is reckless and their desperate effort to score political points no matter who they hurt or how much damage they do is immoral. This is deadly serious, and millions of lives are on the line. 

“The legislation that Republicans plan to hastily slap together would destabilize one-sixth of the economy, skyrocket premiums by 20 percent, take health care from 16 million people, and pave the way for major cuts to Medicaid to pay for huge tax breaks to millionaires and big drug and insurance companies. There is nothing ‘skinny’ about taking away health care from millions and making Americans pay more for less.

“They’re not fooling anyone – this is just the first step toward decimating America’s health care. This proves that they will stop at nothing to put partisan politics above the health care of their constituents, and their shameful disregard for the health and wellbeing of every American will not be forgotten.”

 

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Health Care for America Now (HCAN) is the national grassroots coalition that ran a $60 million five-and-a-half year campaign from 2008-2013 to pass, protect, and promote the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and protect Medicare and Medicaid. HCAN has come back together to fight the Republicans’ all-out effort to take away America’s health care and put people at the mercy of the health insurance companies again.

HCAN In The News: Gant News – Liberal groups push for health care to dominate the midterms

Progressive groups are launching a new data-gathering effort — starting at protests planned across the country this weekend — to turn the 2018 midterms into a single-issue battle over health care.

Called “Health Care Voter,” the campaign will kick off Saturday, where attendees at more than 125 protests will be asked to fill out cards pledging to cast their ballots based on how their lawmakers vote on rolling back Obamacare. It will also include digital ads pushing the pledge.

Read: https://gantdaily.com/2017/07/26/liberal-groups-push-for-health-care-to-dominate-the-midterms/

Press Release: HCAN to Fight Unconscionable Senate Vote

For Immediate Release: Tuesday, July 25, 2017
Contact: Robyn Shapiro, robyn.shapiro@berlinrosen.com, 202-800-7407 

HCAN to Fight Unconscionable Senate Vote

Washington, D.C. – Margarida Jorge and Ethan Rome, co-directors of Health Care for America Now, released the following statement after the U.S. Senate voted to move forward on some version of the GOP repeal bill.

“This vote was an unconscionable partisan political act of the worst kind. It was a vote to strip health care away from millions of Americans, increase costs for millions more, end Medicaid as we know it and weaken consumer protections – all to give tax breaks to the very wealthy and drug and insurance companies. To characterize the Motion to Proceed vote as anything other than a vote to take away America’s health care would be disingenuous at best.

“The public has overwhelmingly rejected every single version of repeal, and we will continue to fight arm-in-arm with Americans from red states and blue states to make our voices even louder and clearer for any senators who have not already gotten the message. 

“Instead of trying to claim political ‘wins’ that destroy America’s health care, Congress should work in a bipartisan way to expand access to affordable care.”

 

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Health Care for America Now (HCAN) is the national grassroots coalition that ran a $60 million five-and-a-half year campaign from 2008-2013 to pass, protect, and promote the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and protect Medicare and Medicaid. HCAN has come back together to fight the Republicans’ all-out effort to take away America’s health care and put people at the mercy of the health insurance companies again.

Press Release: Senate Vote is an Unconscionable, Partisan Political Act to Take Health Care Away from Millions

For Immediate Release: Tuesday, July 25, 2017
Contact: Robyn Shapiro, robyn.shapiro@berlinrosen.com, 202-800-7407

Senate Vote is an Unconscionable, Partisan Political Act to Take Health Care Away from Millions

Washington, D.C. – Margarida Jorge and Ethan Rome, co-directors of Health Care for America Now, released the following statement ahead of the Senate vote on the motion to proceed to some version of the GOP repeal bill.

“This vote is an unconscionable partisan political act of the worst kind. It’s a vote to strip health care away from millions of Americans, increase costs for millions more, end Medicaid as we know it and weaken consumer protections – all to give tax breaks to the very wealthy and drug and insurance companies. To characterize the Motion to Proceed vote as anything other than a vote to take away America’s health care would be disingenuous at best.

“Congress should stop trying to claim political ‘wins’ that destroy America’s health care and instead work in a bipartisan way to expand access to affordable care.”

 

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Health Care for America Now (HCAN) is the national grassroots coalition that ran a $60 million five-and-a-half year campaign from 2008-2013 to pass, protect, and promote the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and protect Medicare and Medicaid. HCAN has come back together to fight the Republicans’ all-out effort to take away America’s health care and put people at the mercy of the health insurance companies again.

Press Release: CBO Analysis is Devastating Indictment of Senate Repeal Bill

For Immediate Release: Thursday, July 20, 2017
Contact: Robyn Shapiro, robyn.shapiro@berlinrosen.com, 202-800-7407 

CBO Analysis is Devastating Indictment of Senate Repeal Bill

Enough is Enough – The GOP Must Stop the War on America’s Health Care

Margarida Jorge and Ethan Rome, co-directors of Health Care for America Now (HCAN), released the following statement after the latest CBO Analysis of the Senate repeal bill.

“The CBO score of the latest Senate repeal bill is a devastating indictment of Republicans’ plan to take away people’s health care. It strips coverage from 22 million people and will increase costs for millions and millions more.

“It shocks the conscience that any Senator would vote to do so much damage to so many people with a single vote – all to give tax breaks to the insurance and drug companies and to claim a political ‘win.’

“For the Republicans this has never really been about health care – it’s been about keeping a political promise to their base, no matter who they hurt in the process. A promise that causes this much human suffering to give tax breaks to the wealthy is not a promise worth keeping. Any Senator even thinking about voting for this bill is willing to do anything to score political points.

“It’s time to move on. The GOP should stop their war on America’s health care and work on bipartisan efforts to make health care more affordable and accessible for all.”

The latest Republican health care repeal bill is essentially the same as the last ones. No amendment or revised version can fix it. Throwing money at a particular problem or state won’t fix what’s fundamentally wrong with this bill. It still takes coverage away from millions of Americans and makes everyone else pay more to get less health care. 

The Senate bill still:

  • Takes health insurance away from millions of Americans – 22 million by 2026.
  • Slashes Medicaid by more than $2 trillion over the next two decades and eliminates Medicaid expansion. 
  • Strips health care from children, people with disabilities, seniors in nursing homes and other vulnerable people who depend on Medicaid for their health care.
  • Lets insurance companies discriminate against people with pre-existing conditions and charge up to five-times more for people over 50.
  • Causes big job losses and hospital closures.
  • Uses those changes to give huge tax breaks to the drug and insurance companies.

 

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Health Care for America Now (HCAN) is the national grassroots coalition that ran a $60 million five-and-a-half year campaign from 2008-2013 to pass, protect, and promote the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and protect Medicare and Medicaid. HCAN has come back together to fight the Republicans’ all-out effort to take away America’s health care and put people at the mercy of the health insurance companies again.