Jan/Feb 2017 State Roundup

ALABAMA

Even in Alabama, PICO is hard at work to fight the terrible proposals on health care. The PICO Alabama affiliate got this great in early February on an event they organized with Alabama ARISE: 

http://www.montgomeryadvertiser.com/story/news/politics/southunionstreet/2017/02/02/clergy-members-urge-defense-affordable-care-act/97406168/.

 

ARKANSAS

Arkansas Community Organizations has been passing local resolutions in AR municipalities objecting to ACA repeal and highlighting the local impact. Pine Bluff resolution got some coverage below. See the link to press:

http://www.pbcommercial.com/news/20170206/council-reduces-enforcement-fees-gets-update-on-demo-program

 

CALIFORNIA

Health Access CA, AFSCME, SEIU, PICO and many others have been working together all over CA to respond to attacks on repeal. There’s been great coverage during the month of January.

In early January, AFSCME members and the clients they serve attended an ACA hearing in Bakersfield and offered testimony about the dangerous impact of repealing ACA. UDWA member Julie Otero’s testimony got widespread news coverage. See samples below: 

In mid-January, AFSCME, Health Access, SEIU, North Valley Labor Federation, CA Rural Legal Assistance Foundation and others teamed up for candlelight Vigil after the ACA Repeal vote in Cong. Jeff Denham’s district. Coverage of the event below:

  • Modesto Bee newspaper: http://www.modbee.com/news/article126138094.html
  •  KCRA News (CBS affiliate): A good segment was shown during the popular Good Day Sacramento morning program on 1/13/17, and a news “ticker” across the bottom of the screen commented on the protest vigil continuously throughout the morning

Finally, on January 15th, Health Access, AFSCME, SEIU, and many others joined Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee, progressive activist and billionaire Tom Steyer, legendary singer Joan Baez, numerous other federal, state and local elected officials, as well as several individuals (from business owners to care givers to cancer survivors) who would be directly impacted by repeal of the ACA at a huge rally in San Francisco.  Almost every media outlet reported on the event:

A second huge event was also held on Jan. 15th in Los Angeles. There were great champions including newly elected Senator Kamala Harris in attendance as well as doctors, patients, nurses, union members, etc.

Nice quote from Nancy Gomez of Health Access included in this clip:

Nancy Marisa Gomez, organizing director of Health Access and a representative for #Fight4OurHealth Coalition, told the crowd that the broad coalition of more than 100 groups would “fight like hell” for their right to affordable health care.

“We’re not naive; we know the inevitable is going to happen, but we want them to delay the process and consider and put forth a realistic alternative so people don’t lose coverage and have the rug ripped right from under them,” Gomez said after the rally, which organizers estimated was attended by at least 700 people.

 

COLORADO

SEIU, Together Colorado and their coalition held a great rally on January 30th that included 500+ people! The rally opposed repeal of the ACA and a bill by state Senate Republicans to repeal the Colorado exchange.  Speakers included Sen Lucia Guzman, Senate Minority Leader, and Rep. Joann Ginal, and 4 people with personal stories.

See pictures herehttps://drive.google.com/open?id=0B43XwrJ4jL8CVVJWbC1nQTBBV3c.

Also great clips below:

Rally Held At State Capitol Over Affordable Care Act, Insurance Exchange

January 31, 2017 9:07 PM

CBS 4

DENVER (CBS4) – A crowd gathered at the state Capitol on Tuesday in favor of keeping the Affordable Care Act and the Connect for Health Colorado insurance exchange.

http://denver.cbslocal.com/2017/01/31/affordable-care-act-rally-colorado-capitol/

 

Groups Stand Up for Colorado Health Insurance Marketplace

January 31, 2017

Public News Services

DENVER – Groups are gathering on the steps of the state Capitol today to protest efforts by some lawmakers to repeal Connect for Health Colorado, the state’s health-insurance marketplace.

http://www.publicnewsservice.org/2017-01-31/consumer-issues/groups-stand-up-for-colorado-health-insurance-marketplace/a56167-1

 

Republicans defend plan to repeal health insurance exchange despite protests

January 31, 2017

Colorado Politics

As demonstrators called for keeping the status quo, Colorado Senate Republicans on Tuesday argued the case for what is so far a one-party effort to repeal the state’s health-insurance exchange. http://coloradopolitics.com/republicans-defend-plan-repeal-health-insurance-exchange-despite-protests/

 

Capitol crowd roars against proposed rollbacks of health care coverage: ‘Obamacare! What a wonderful word’

January 31, 2017

Colorado Statesman https://www.coloradostatesman.com/capitol-crowd-roars-against-proposed-rollbacks-of-state-federal-health-care-coverage-obamacare-what-a-wonderful-word/

 

Democrats rally in support of state, national health insurance programs

January 31, 2017

Durango Herald https://durangoherald.com/articles/133122-democrats-rally-in-support-of-state-national-health-insurance-programs

 

And earlier in January, for the January 15th day of action, the coalition helped turnout over 500  people to a rally  with Reps. DeGette and Perlmutter,Lt Gov Donna Lynne, House Speaker Crisanta Duran, SEIU Local 105 President Ron Ruggiero and homecare worker Corletta Hithon.

Great coverage: 

http://kdvr.com/2017/01/15/hundreds-attend-denver-rally-to-prevent-repeal-of-affordable-care-act/

http://www.denverpost.com/2017/01/15/diana-degette-fight-repeal-obamacare/

 

ILLINOIS

Citizen Action of IL and AFSCME Council 31 worked with the Save our HealthCare Bus Tour on two events in the state in late January. In addition, Citizen Action supported a great event in Roskam’s district with Sen. Durbin.

On the last weekend of January, Citizen Action of IL stepped up their work to organize members to attend Roskam’s town hall meeting. They successfully confronted the Congressman and he reacted, like other colleagues, by running from his constituents—resulting in the great coverage below.

 

MAINE

While Republicans in Washington DC are busy trying to cut Medicaid through block grants and cuts, Maine People’s Alliance and their coalition are working on expanding Medicaid via the ballot initiative process. On January 25,  Mainers for Health Care steering committee delivered more than 67,000 signatures to the Secretary of State to place a referendum on the ballot to expand Medicaid coverage in Maine. The petitions pave the way for a public vote on accepting federal funding to cover tens of thousands of Mainers who currently can’t afford health insurance but have been denied coverage through Medicaid. Similar bills have been passed by bi-partisan majorities in the legislature multiple times in recent years, but have been repeatedly vetoed by Governor Paul LePage.

Press clips:

Maine People’s Alliance also continued work to challenge ACA repeal and cuts to Medicaid with activity and earned media around the state ithroughout January:

 

MICHIGAN

Michigan United recruited a great speaker to testify against the Price nominee in mid January. Her testimony was well covered back home. See the clips below:

In addition, Michigan United and Michigan People’s Campaign kicked off their Tuesday Turnout campaign, our strategy to resist and disrupt the Trump Agenda by putting pressure on members of Congress over the first 100 days of the Administration. In partnership with MoveON.com, they turned out over 100 constituents in Detroit to fill building which houses the Congressional Office of Representative David Trott (11th CD), demanding that he meet with constituents to discuss his position on the Affordable Care Act, a law he has repeatedly voted to repeal. Members in Kalamazoo carried out a similar action in where MU and MPC members demanded a meeting with Representative Fred Upton.

Michigan United has also been doing actions on Republicans Walberg, Bishop, and Mitchell in January and February. These events started escalation arcs and got a lot of new members involved. Great local press hit in Walberg’s district below. They also did good thank you events at Democrats Conyers, Levin and Lawrence office asking these members to be champions for saving health care.

http://www.mlive.com/news/jackson/index.ssf/2017/01/fix_it_dont_nix_it_health_care.html

 

MISSOURI

MO Health Care for All, Jobs with Justice and Missouri Faith Voices have been doing events in January and February around the state to raise the visibility of ACA repeal and attacks on Medicaid. See coverage below:

Joplin

 

Springfield

 

West Plains

Most recently, PICO affiliate Faith Voices got great coverage on this mid-Missouri event:

Columbia residents rally in support of the Affordable Care Act
http://www.columbiatribune.com/news/local/columbia-residents-rally-in-support-of-the-affordable-care-act/article_b168443f-71be-52ab-a9bf-cf1f20133057.html

 

NEW HAMPSHIRE

Allies including Rights & Democracy are quoted in this clip from in Manchester, New Hampshire: http://www.wmur.com/article/manchester-voters-rally-to-save-the-affordable-care-act/8601494

 

NEW JERSEY

NJCA and allies did several vigils in January targeting GOP House members who supported repealing the ACA and taking health care away from New Jerseyans. See coverage below.

 

NEW YORK

There’s been continuous and widespread coverage of anti-repeal activities in New York state since the election and in the first month of 2017.

On January 5th, AFSCME, SEIU and CANY organized a press conference in response to a request from Senator Chuck Schumer that got great press coverage:

CANY, SEIU and their many partners at HCFANY also did a great series of events on January 12th that got a lot of press attention. The groups worked with the Save Our Health Care Bus Tour on some great events upstate that coincided with the inauguration of President Trump. See below.

Capital Tonight (TV show broadcast statewide on Time Warner Stations; widely seen by political people): http://www.twcnews.com/nys/capital-region/capital-tonight-interviews/2017/01/20/fighting-to-save-the-affordable-care-act.html

http://wamc.org/post/national-savemycare-tour-bus-makes-

January 12th Events:

Long Island

Daily Gazette (Schenectady)

Albany Times Union (appeared on blog; not sure about print edition):

Channel 10 (ABC, Fox)

Channel 9 (Time Warner Cable)

Channel 13 (NBC) (2 clips)

Also, there was a great protest at Faso’s office two weekends ago that has generated a lot of press–Faso didn’t run from his constituents, to his credit.  This seems to have originated as a grassroots (non-group led event) that CANY members attended. CANY staff have followed up with the leaders and doing some more work together!

 

NORTH CAROLINA

Action NC organized two rallies for the January 15th day of action: one in Raleigh \co-sponsored with Progress NC, and one in Charlotte cosponsored with Health Care Justice NC. Both had 150+ people in attendance. Congressman David Price attended the Raleigh event, which was held at the offices of the North Carolina Association of Educators. Along with him, three ACA recipients and two doctors spoke. Four tv stations and the local daily paper turned out. In Charlotte speakers included two recipients, one doctor and representatives from several organizing and activist groups–Planned Parenthood, NAACP, NOW, Health Care Justice NC and Action NC. Several other recipients spoke when we did an open mike to end the event. See the press below:

 

PENNSYLVANIA

Keystone Progress did a great event in Reading on Jan. 27th that got coverage below. Over 30 people show up in the cold to stand up for our healthcare.  We had some great stories, which are reflected in the media coverage below.

 

OHIO

Earlier in January, Progress Ohio and Ohio Policy Matters did a great report release event with allies that got coverage on AP in 41 places. Columbus Business First hit the hospital employment angle hard; Dayton Daily News ran the local county breakdowns.

 

VERMONT

Rights and Democracy in Vermont and their allies held a great event for the January day of action. Over 1000 people turned out and there was good media coverage.

 

VIRGINIA

Virginia Organizing continued to organize health care events across the state in January that generated good earned media in different areas of the state. See some samples below.


Harrisonburg

Virginia Beach
http://www.pressreleasepoint.com/virginia-beach-virginia-organizing-hold-demonstration-support-health-care-all-people

Danville
http://www.godanriver.com/opinion/letters_to_editor/make-our-lives-better-not-worse/article_6249a61a-d12f-11e6-979d-a3a28db4e120.html


Martinsville
http://www.martinsvillebulletin.com/news/local-residents-raise-concerns-about-federal-decisions/article_6ab704fa-e9bc-11e6-8062-b7f7d554741a.html

Of particular note is the quote from a GOP Congressman making excuses about why he’s not having town halls:

“It’s all part of the Democrat strategy: They want to have these meetings so they can bring in a bunch of protesters,” he said. “There’s a group, (Indivisible Guide), and they’re encouraging people to do these things, and they’re pushing everybody to do this so they can show up with big banners and have press. I want to solve problems. I’m happy to make meetings with people who want to have meetings, who are constituents, and sit down and try to problem solve. But I’m not interested in showing up at what they hope will end up being a media event for the lynching of the local congressman.”

WASHINGTON

WACAN! worked with the WA State Governor on a large event in mid-January and also continued to recruit stories of impacted people to be featured in press clips like this one:

http://news.sky.com/story/obamacare-familys-fears-for-the-future-of-the-landmark-healthcare-law-10733753

 

WEST VIRGINIA

WVCAG and coalition groups did a great event on Jan. 12th to keep up the drumbeat on the dangers of repeal. Speakers included Doctors, Nurses, and folks covered who stand to lose coverage, even got a rural hospital admin to speak on how one provision of ACA enabled them to add new specialists to serve their county. CNN was there filming and some b-roll appeared on later segment which also features HCAN’s “Don’t Take My Health Care” yellow and black signs.

Video here https://www.facebook.com/WVCAG/

CLIP: http://edition.cnn.com/videos/politics/2017/01/24/fight-to-save-obamacare-marquez-pkg-ac.cnn

Just 2 weeks later on the 24th, the coalition released a great report that also got great coverage.

 

WISCONSIN

Citizen Action of Wisconsin turned out people to a huge Milwaukee event for the January 15th day of action and subsequently held 5 events later in January. The event in Milwaukee with Senator Tammy Baldwin and Congresswoman Gwen Moore packed a room designed for 300 with over 660 people, while another 200 were outside for a second impromptu rally. 4 tv stations, public radio and major paper covered it.

Milwaukee, January 15th:

Eau Claire Event:

Event in extremely Conservative Waukesha County:

Fox Valley

Appleton