MomsRising Leader Calls House Passage of American Health Care Act an ‘Assault on Our Health’
May 4, 2017
Statement from Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner, CEO and executive director of MomsRising.org, a national online and on-the-ground organization of more than 1 million mothers and their families, on the passage of the American Health Care Act in the House of Representatives
“The vote today in the House of Representatives to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is irresponsible, damaging and a shameful instance of lawmakers putting partisan interests ahead of the country’s interests. The bill the House passed would take coverage away from 24 million people, decimate our nation’s cherished Medicaid program, and gut protections for those with pre-existing conditions. It would make health insurance less affordable, less accessible and less comprehensive for the families that need it most. It is nothing less than an assault on our health. Moms demand that the Senate reject this bill.
“The MacArthur and Upton amendments made a bad bill even worse than the version considered in March, when House leadership couldn’t garner enough support to bring it to a vote. These amendments would allow states to opt out of requiring insurance providers to cover essential health benefits and offer coverage to people with pre-existing conditions at a reasonable price. In addition, about half of the country—including those on employer plans—could lose protections that limit out-of-pocket costs for catastrophic illnesses. This will bring us back to the pre-ACA days when people went bankrupt because of medical bills, insurance companies didn’t have to cover the care people need most, and women and people with pre-existing conditions could be charged more for coverage.
“The worst components of the original bill remain and the amendments just made this terrible bill worse. The bill still defunds Planned Parenthood, cutting off essential preventive services to millions of people. It still would lead to higher premiums and out-of-pocket costs, especially for seniors. And it still guts Medicaid, which would cause states to ration care for some of the most vulnerable people in our country: Black, Latinx, Asian, Native American, LGBTQ+, and middle to low-income families; as well as pregnant women, people with disabilities, rural communities, and the elderly.
“In the past several months, thousands and thousands of MomsRising members have called, testified, signed petitions, and written letters urging members of Congress to do what’s best for the country by protecting and improving the ACA rather than repealing it. Every representative who voted for this bill prioritized a partisan political agenda over the health and wellbeing of constituents. It’s now up to the Senate to reject this destructive bill and protect health care for moms and their families.”