Affordable Care Act

Black Lawmakers Not Here for GOP’s Nonsense ACA Repeal Attempt

African-American lawmakers took to Twitter before they took to Capitol Hill to fight Republican attempts to eliminate the Affordable Care Act

by #teamEBONY, May 4, 2017

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Affordable Care Act

President Barack Obama speaking to a joint session of Congress regarding health care reform in 2009

Lawrence Jackson/Whitehouse.gov

The Republicans are going after the Affordable Care Act again, even after poll after poll indicates that Americans do not want to get rid of President Obama’s signature policy achievement to replace it with what President Trump is calling the American Healthcare Act.

On Thursday, House GOP legislators are expected to take a roll call vote on repealing the ACA, six weeks after the measure died from lack of support among representatives who did not believe the provisions of the original measure was a good enough replacement. House leaders hope that revisions that add money to help people with pre-existing conditions, eliminate tax penalties, cuts Medicaid for low-income people, and turns subsidies for people purchasing insurance into age-based tax credits. Not to mention defunding Planned Parenthood.

While the bill could win passage in the House, it will likely face daunting challenges in the Senate due to filibustering and other procedural hurdles. The Hill reports Senate leaders believe the repeal has a 1 in 5 chance of getting the 51 votes it needs.

Despite Republican belief that the ACA, which they dubbed “Obamacare,” harms American taxpayers, African-Americans and Latinos have largely benefitted from the law being passed. A Gallup poll released last year shows a stark drop in the uninsured rate for both groups. A net change of 9.5 percentage points for Blacks and 10.4 for Latinos.

So naturally, African-American legislators are calling to push back the Republican effort to eliminate the gains made from the ACA. Some are pointing out specifics for what might happen and what Blacks have to lose if the policy is taken away.

Others are taking to the phone and reaching out to find ways to resist what their Republican colleagues have insisted on pushing through, despite the objection.

Still others have taken to the airwaves to warn what could happen if the legislation moves toward passage.

Many don’t need much more than numbers to explain how many people will be harmed if the Affordable Care Act is replaced with the AHCA.

Finally, to drive it home, a Florida rep didn’t need to tell the story, her constituent did.

To watch live House floor proceedings all day Thursday, go to http://houselive.gov/

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