Two years in the past immediately, Home Republicans handed their invoice (known as AHCA) to intestine the Reasonably priced Care Act, after which held a kegger to have fun.
I bear in mind it fairly clearly. As a result of this occurred the day after my first chemotherapy remedy.
I’ve stage four Hodgkin’s lymphoma. 1st chemo immediately. Obamacare is actually maintaining me alive & can get me cured. If it survives. #SavetheACA
— Laura Packard (@lpackard) Could four, 2017
I walked into a health care provider’s workplace in April of 2017 as a wholesome 40-year-old with a nagging cough. And walked out with a stage four most cancers prognosis. My whole life modified that quick.
Saved by an ACA insurance coverage coverage
Whereas I went via six months of grueling chemotherapy after which a month of radiation therapies, I needed to combat Republicans within the Home and Senate each step of the best way. I’m self-employed – my market-rate insurance coverage coverage is on the person market via the Reasonably priced Care Act. There is no such thing as a Plan B for me.
Earlier than the ACA, I bear in mind I used to have junk insurance coverage. If I nonetheless had that insurance coverage, immediately I might be bankrupt or lifeless.
So I stored preventing. We wrote letters, we known as and known as, we protested, and nonetheless they moved ahead with a number of makes an attempt to remove our well being care. Heck, President Trump even blocked me on Twitter, however we didn’t cease preventing.
President Trump blocked a girl with stage four most cancers on Twitter.
Right here’s her response: pic.twitter.com/JNJ39xoUM5
— NowThis (@nowthisnews) September 21, 2017
My Senator on the time, Senator Dean Heller, didn’t take heed to us. I used to be even thrown out of his occasion for daring to ask him about his well being care file.
.@SenDeanHeller now throws out a stage four most cancers affected person for demanding solutions. That is disgusting. #GOPTaxScam pic.twitter.com/tZa9HMOoCA
— Battle Born Progress (@BattleBornProg) December 2, 2017
However Senator Heller is now not a Senator immediately. In reality, most of the elected officers that turned on their very own constituents fairly than defending their information are now not in workplace.
The cruelty of the AHCA
The varied Republican well being care payments have been nothing wanting merciless, and everybody that voted for them ought to be ashamed of themselves.
The AHCA invoice within the Home vowed to provide tax cuts to millionaires, billionaires, and rich firms whereas slicing $834 billion from Medicaid, adopted by $276 billion in cutbacks for subsidies for particular person medical insurance. It will have reduce 1.eight million jobs by 2022. It will have raised the uninsured charge by 23 million People by 2026 – together with a 50 p.c improve of the uninsured charge amongst kids.
When the 217 Home Republicans handed their invoice, they confirmed the American folks that their priorities have been with rich donors – not our entry to essential and lifesaving well being care.
GOP’s obsession with Obamacare continues
Though the subsequent GOP well being care invoice finally failed within the Senate by 1 vote (thanks Senator McCain), they’re nonetheless obsessive about Obamacare. Not one week in the past, President Trump spoke at a Nationwide Rifle Affiliation convention in Indianapolis, speaking about their success in eradicating the person mandate and added “Now we’re going for the remaining.” Just a few days in the past the Trump Administration attacked the ACA in federal courtroom, dealing us one other blow of their try to destroy the well being care hundreds of thousands of individuals depend on to outlive.
Earlier this yr, I moved to Colorado as a result of, due to reckless Republicans and their anti-ACA courtroom case, I had to make sure I lived in a spot with protections on a state stage for folks like me. I’m fortunate to have the liberty to have the ability to transfer for my well being, most individuals don’t have that flexibility and shouldn’t must have that flexibility simply to remain alive and properly.
I’m not alone in dealing with this selection. There are roughly 130 million People who dwell with pre-existing circumstances and almost 2.four million Coloradans. We should have lawmakers who will combat to guard our care, fairly than showering their billionaire buddies with extra tax breaks.
My new Senator Cory Gardner has voted many instances to repeal the Reasonably priced Care Act, leaving folks with pre-existing circumstances like me out within the chilly. He voted 4 instances for repeal within the Senate, plus one other three votes for whole repeal within the Home. He can’t whitewash away his votes, any greater than these of us with pre-existing circumstances can whitewash away our personal medical historical past.
AHCA anniversary reminds us what’s at stake
As we mark the 2 yr anniversary of the primary failed Republican Well being Care Repeal Invoice, we are able to’t overlook how Republicans like Senator Gardner proceed to place our entry to well being care on the road.
I see my oncologist each six months to ensure I keep in remission, most cancers will not be one thing I’m ever allowed to overlook. Each physician’s go to is a reminder of how delicate our personal our bodies may be, and the way susceptible we may be to the system after we want medical care. Our elected officers should combat to make well being care extra out there and inexpensive to all. On this anniversary, take heed to their phrases however bear in mind their votes. And after we march to the polls subsequent yr, vote accordingly.
Laura Packard is a stage four most cancers survivor, nationwide co-chair of Well being Care Voter, and founding father of Voices of Well being Care, a non-profit targeted on organizing adults with severe medical circumstances. She is a small enterprise proprietor in Denver.
2015: Gardner Voted To Repeal Most Of The ACA. Gardner voted for laws that gutted the Reasonably priced Care Act by eliminating the insurance coverage exchanges and subsidies, and repealing the Medicaid enlargement accepted by 30 states, together with Colorado. [HR 3762, Roll Call Vote #114, 12/3/15]
2017: Gardner Voted For The Senate “Repeal And Delay” Plan. Gardner voted for Obamacare Repeal and Alternative Act was a Republican effort to repeal the ACA and not using a substitute. Generally known as “repeal and delay,” the invoice repealed main sections of the ACA, together with the Medicaid enlargement and premium tax credit, in 2020. [HR 1628, Roll Call Vote #169, 7/26/17]
2017: Gardner Voted For The Higher Care Reconciliation Act. Gardner voted for the Higher Care Reconciliation Act, which repealed and changed the ACA. [HR 1628, Roll Call Vote #168, 7/25/17]
2017: Gardner Voted For “Skinny Repeal” Of The ACA. Gardner voted for “Skinny Repeal” of the ACA, which repealed the person mandate and delayed the employer mandate whereas leaving many of the remainder of the regulation in place. [HR 1628, Roll Call Vote #179, 7/28/17]
2011: Gardner Voted For A Whole Repeal Of The ACA. Gardner voted for The “Well being Care and Schooling Reconciliation Act” would have repealed the entire Reasonably priced Care Act. [HR 2, Roll Call Vote #14, 1/19/11]
2011: Gardner Voted To Repeal And Defund The ACA. Gardner voted for the fiscal 2012 finances that might have repealed and defunded the Reasonably priced Care Act. [HCR 34, Roll Call Vote #277, 4/15/11]
2013: Gardner Voted For A Whole Repeal Of The ACA. Gardner voted for HR 45, an act “to repeal the Affected person Safety and Reasonably priced Care Act and well being care-related provisions within the Well being Care and Schooling Reconciliation Act of 2010.” [HR 45, Roll Call Vote #154, 5/16/13]