33 and counting?!
Earlier today, the U.S. House of Representatives voted 244-185 to repeal the Affordable Care Act. If this feels like deja vu, it's because it is. By the its own count, the GOP majority has voted to repeal or defund the Affordable Care 33 times -- yes, 33 times! -- since it claimed the majority in 2010. Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi called this action a waste of time and the "bill to nowhere" since a repeal effort has no chance of passing the Democratic-controlled Senate or surviving a Presidential veto.
It's time to move on. According to a recent Kaiser Family Foundation poll, 56% of independent voters (read: swing voters) want the Congress to move on to other issues.
The House Republicans' relentless attack on health care is inexplicable to the millions of parents and families who are already benefiting from the law. Families like Christine Farley's. Christine's 14-year-old son has cystic fibrosis a serious condition that causes persistent lung infections, breathing difficulty and digestive difficulties. Before the Affordable Care Act, Christine's son was facing an uncertain future because of insurance company exclusions for pre-existing conditions and lifetime caps.
Today, hours before the vote, Christine shared her story alongside Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and many other supportive MomsRising members and their children. The event was covered by The Hill and Christine's comments were entered into Leader Pelosi's formal testimony on the House floor.
In her comments, Christine shared:
"Because of the Affordable Care Act, my son will be able to get the care and treatment he needs. He will be able to stay on our insurance until he’s 26 and after that no insurance company will be able to deny him coverage because of his pre-existing condition. And we won’t have to worry about lifetime limits on his coverage. Significantly, he won’t have to base his decisions about a job or a career on health care coverage."
Not surprisingly, a number of members of Congress, including some of those who are actively trying to repeal the Affordable Care Act, are taking advantage of the law's common sense provisions. And, when questioned directly by people who rely on the law's protections against denials based on pre-existing conditions, even top Republican leadership has expressed support and sympathy for aspects of the law.
With this background, it's challenging not to feel that these attack son the Affordable Care Act are simply political posturing. I sincerely hope not. Because my family - our families - needs much more for our leadership right now.
If you haven't already, learn what the Affordable Care Act might mean for you and your family on www.healthcare.gov.