Democrats are lashing out at the Republican plan to repeal and replace Obamacare ahead of Thursday’s scheduled House vote.
“This will cost American lives if it ever becomes law,” Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., said on MSNBC. “This will mean death.”
Booker and other Democrats say the GOP legislation would cause millions of Americans, particularly those in rural and low-income areas, to lose the coverage they gained under the Affordable Care Act, President Barack Obama’s signature health care law.
“We cannot be playing politics with people’s health care,” Booker said. “Screw the politics. This is about people. This is about what’s morally right. This is about what we stand for.”
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) May 4, 2017
Republicans are expected to bring the so-called American Health Care Act to a vote Thursday afternoon, as GOP leaders say they are finally confident they have enough support for it to pass the House.
“We’re gonna pass it! We’re gonna pass it!” House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., told reporters on Wednesday. “Let’s be optimistic about life!”
That wasn’t the case in March, when House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., abruptly pulled the legislation, which had been embraced by President Trump, before a planned vote.
At that time, the Congressional Budget Office estimated that the GOP plan would leave 24 million more Americans uninsured by 2026, including 14 million by next year. Republicans are pressing to bring the latest version to a vote without an updated analysis from the nonpartisan office.
“Forcing a vote without a CBO score shows that Republicans are terrified of the public learning the full consequences of their plan,” House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said Wednesday. “But tomorrow, House Republicans are going to tattoo this moral monstrosity to their foreheads, and the American people will hold them accountable.”
MoveOn.org sent an email to its members late Wednesday urging them to share a clip from comedian Jimmy Kimmel’s emotional monologue revealing his newborn son’s health complications.
On Monday’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” the late night host explained that his son William required heart surgery on April 24, just three days after his birth. At the end of the story, Kimmel made a passionate plea to lawmakers to ensure all Americans have access to health care.
“If your baby is going to die and it doesn’t have to, it shouldn’t matter how much money you make,” he said. “I hope you never have to go there, but if you do, you’ll see so many kids from so many financial backgrounds being cared for so well with so much compassion.”
“Well said, Jimmy,” Obama subsequently tweeted. “That’s exactly why we fought so hard for the ACA, and why we need to protect it for kids like Billy.”
Well said, Jimmy. That's exactly why we fought so hard for the ACA, and why we need to protect it for kids like Billy. And congratulations! https://t.co/77F8rZrD3P
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) May 2, 2017
Back in March, Trump blamed Democrats for not helping him dismantle Obamacare, which he said he would let “explode.”
“We had no Democrat support,” he said shortly after Ryan pulled the GOP bill from the House floor. “We had no votes from the Democrats. They weren’t going to give us a single vote, so it’s a very difficult thing to do.”
The president subsequently predicted that Democrats would be willing to work with him once it does pass the House.
“Perhaps the best thing that could happen is exactly what happened today,” Trump said at the time. “Because we’ll end up with a truly great health care bill in the future after this mess known as Obamacare.”
Even if the House passes the bill, though, there’s no guarantee it will survive the Senate.
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