As the pandemic rages on, so do Trump’s attacks on our health care
This piece was originally published in the July 1, 2020 edition of CAP Action’s daily newsletter, the Progress Report. Subscribe to the Progress Report here.
“Bars. Bars are really not good.”
— Dr. Anthony Fauci this week, warning of the dangers of partaking in nightlife as the pandemic persists. A Michigan bar was identified yesterday as the source of at least 107 confirmed coronavirus cases.
If the Trump administration-backed lawsuit to repeal the Affordable Care Act succeeds, health insurance premiums for people who buy coverage on their own will spike, 23 million Americans will lose their health care, and billionaires will get massive tax cuts.
Trump’s attempts to take away our health care were scary enough when we weren’t in the middle of a global pandemic. Now — with millions of Americans out of work and federal unemployment checks set to expire at the end of the month — they’re terrifying.
IN THE NEWS
- Oklahomans voted to expand Medicaid last night in yet another sign of public support for the policies enacted by the Affordable Care Act. It’s clear that Americans are desperate for change in our health care system — but even more urgently, they’re begging those in power not to take the system back to where it stood before the ACA was signed into law.
- Reopening businesses and protesting do not carry equivalent risks. That’s the conclusion of a new report out this week from CAP’s Nicole Rapfogel and Maura Calsyn. They write that while the protests may result in additional cases, “those making the decision to join the rallies and call for racial justice are in fact fighting a preexisting public health crisis — systemic racism.” They also note the “fundamental difference” between protesters calling for an end to the systematic killing of Black people and Trump calling for an end to life-saving public health measures in favor of a profit-driven return to normalcy.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
- Check this out: Yesterday, we launched a brand new tool to connect Americans with their senators as part of our effort to ensure voting is safe and accessible in the wake of a global health crisis. We’re calling on Congress to pass the HEROES Act, which will help states expand vote by mail and early voting ahead of November’s election. Click here to join us.
- The Department of Homeland Security announced a deeply problematic new task force charged with “protecting our nation’s historic monuments” this morning. According to Acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf, the new task force will “[answer] the President’s call” to deploy “law enforcement personnel” to safeguard monuments. “We won’t stand idly by while violent anarchists and rioters seek not only to vandalize and destroy the symbols of our nation, but to disrupt law and order and sow chaos in our communities,” Wolf said in a statement. Reminder: This is the same DHS that last year disbanded its unit to combat white supremacist groups.
- The announcement of this new task force comes as Trump continues stoking fear over growing demands to dismantle Confederate statues and other public commemorations of racist individuals. Further escalating his defense of these hateful symbols, Trump pledged in a tweet today to veto a must-pass defense funding bill if it contains Senator Elizabeth Warren’s provision to rename military bases that are named after Confederate figures. The amendment received bipartisan support in the Senate Armed Services Committee last month, and is set to remain in the bill.
WHAT WE’RE READING
- Yes, Even George Washington by Charles M. Blow (New York Times)
- How White Supremacy Returned to Mainstream Politics by Simon Clark (CAP)
- Amid the George Floyd protests, imagining the nonviolent state by Ezra Klein (Vox)
- Extreme Heat During the COVID-19 Pandemic Amplifies Racial and Economic Inequities by Elise Gout and Cathleen Kelly (CAP)
- Jamaal Bowman on how Congress can dismantle institutional racism by Ella Nilsen (Vox)
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