After seven years of deriding the “disaster” of the Affordable Care Act and months of promising to repeal and replace the law, House Republican leaders have finally introduced an Obamacare replacement bill. Trumpcare, aka the American Health Care Act, does not succeed in fulfilling Trump’s promise to “take care of everybody.” In fact, it breaks nearly every promise Trump made about health care during the campaign. Unsurprisingly, it takes care of the wealthiest Americans at the expense of everyone else. In fact, this plan would increase costs for the average consumer by more than $1,500 a year. Here are a few other key takeaways:
- Ends Medicaid expansion: Under the ACA, states had the option of increasing the number of low-income people covered under Medicaid. This bill makes it impossible for states to continue Medicaid expansion for new enrolleess after 2020, meaning millions fewer low-income people would have coverage.
- Sets the stage for deep cuts to funding for Medicaid through per-capita caps: To help pay for the plan, Trumpcare caps Medicaid funding for states, which will eventually leave Governors and state legislatures no choice but to reduce coverage and increase costs for millions of additional seniors, low-income families, people with disabilities, and children covered under Medicaid.
- Reduces tax credits making coverage less affordable: The plan puts coverage out of reach for millions of moderate-income families by reducing the amount of the tax credits that make coverage affordable. Those who keep coverage will end up paying more on average in premiums and cost-sharing.
- Undermines protections for those with pre-existing conditions: Under the bill, a gap in coverage, even for a couple of months, would mean you are forced to pay a hefty penalty for the next year putting high-quality coverage would once again be out of reach for millions.
- Provides health savings accounts for the rich: Health savings accounts are great if you’re rich. But most people don’t have extra money lying around to put into health savings accounts. That means HSAs amount to just another tax break for the wealthiest. For people living paycheck-to-paycheck, they do nothing to make health care more affordable or accessible.
- Defunds Planned Parenthood: Stripping federal Medicaid funds from Planned Parenthood risks cutting off essential care from millions of women who rely on Planned Parenthood for their health care. The bill also restricts private insurance coverage of abortion, denying women access to the full range of pregnancy-related care under their health plans.
The Congressional Budget Office has yet to score the legislation, which means we don’t yet know how much the bill will cost or how many fewer people it will cover. But it is safe to say, the bill will cover fewer people, offer weaker protections, and increase costs. And after years of complaining falsely that the ACA was “rushed through in the dark of night,” congressional Republicans are doing just that. The House will start debating the bill tomorrow, just two days after it was released and Senate Majority Leader McConnell (R-KY) has promised to take it up as soon as possible in the Senate.
ACTION OF THE DAY
#ProtectOurCare. Here’s what you need to know about Trumpcare: fewer people covered, weaker protections, and higher costs. And because people like you have shown up at town halls and congressional offices across the country to oppose ACA repeal, Republicans are trying to hide the fact that their plan would cause millions of people to lose their care. In fact, they tried so hard to keep this bill a secret that until last night they literally kept it behind closed doors. Here’s where you come in: Call your member of Congress today at (202) 224-3121 and demand they #ProtectOurCare and oppose Trumpcare.
#StandWithPP. Donald Trump is threatening to cut off federal funding for Planned Parenthood unless the group agrees to stop performing abortions. Here’s the kicker: out of the $500 million in federal funds that Planned Parent receives each year, approximately ZERO goes towards funding abortions. Here’s what defunding PP would actually do.
Same page. Yesterday, it again became clear just how much influence Exxon has over the Trump White House. In a press release, the White House copied language directly from an ExxonMobil corporate press release— with one paragraph taken nearly verbatim from the company. President Trump also tried to claim credit for the jobs that the company announced, but this investment plan was actually enacted under the Obama Administration. Actually, almost all of the jobs that Trump has claimed credit for since becoming President were created before the election. Sad!
WANTED ads. Looking for: a moderate Supreme Court Justice. Today, Supreme Court advocates—led by Generation Progress—hand delivered memos to members of the Senate Judiciary Committee highlighting serious questions about SCOTUS Nominee Neil Gorsuch’s anti-worker, pro-corporate record. Also today, Sens. Murray, Merkley, and Markey called on their peers to seriously vet the Gorsuch’s record—a record colored with troubling rulings on worker safety, disability rights and support for money in politics. For more similar actions near you, check out ResistanceNearMe.
UNDER THE RADAR
$870,068,698. That’s how much funding states cumulatively stand to lose with Donald Trump’s immigration order targeting sanctuary cities. The type of programs on the chopping block? Economic development, community policing, education, and community development grants, among others. See how much your state could lose from Trump’s immigration policy here.
Blessings. In a world full of Betsy DeVoses, Chance The Rapper gives us a glimmer of hope. Chance donated $1 million to Chicago Public Schools.