American Health Care Act

On the third attempt to pass a repeal-and-replace of the Affordable Care Act, House Republicans cleared the first hurdle on May 4th with 217-213 votes in passing the American Health Care Act through the House.

The legislation passed because of two key amendments two the bill: The McCarthy Amendment, and the Upton Amendment, which Republican lawmakers claim will allow the free market system of health care to return to the states while still requiring that they maintain coverage for pre-existing conditions – a sticking point for many House Republicans.

There is one major problem with that promise: it’s not true.

Under the Affordable Care, protections exist to prevent insurance companies from charging patients more based on pre-existing conditions, such as asthma, pregnancy, and cancer. With this latest amendment from House Republicans, states can opt-out of that protection and insurance companies are no longer capped from charging the sickest, poorest, and elderly higher rates.

This bill faces an uphill climb in the Senate, but that doesn’t mean we don’t have to fight against it. The American Health Care Act is being passed through a process known as reconciliation. So long as the bill doesn’t add to the deficit (which could put the Upton Amendment’s 8 billion dollar subsidy for pre-existing conditions into jeopardy), it only needs 51 votes to pass the Senate, and not the traditional 60 vote threshold needed to pass legislation.  

Become familiar with your senator’s phone number and the nearest location of his office. Our Congressmen took a vote on May 4th to endanger the lives of 320,000 Idahoans with pre-existing conditions, and to raise the premiums of thousand more.

health care

As Nancy Pelosi warned House Republicans: “As special as we think we are when we come to the floor here, most Americans don’t know who their member of Congress is. But they will now, when they find out that you voted to take away their healthcare…Some of you have said ‘Well, they’ll fix it in the Senate.’ But you have every provision of this bill tattooed on your forehead. You will glow in the dark on this one. So don’t walk the plank unnecessarily.

But they did. They walked the plank, and we know now that Rep. Labrador and Rep. Simpson do not care about the sick, poor, and elderly, but rather would prefer to give a tax break to the wealthy. They made that political decision on May 4th. And we will make ours on November 6, 2018. 

 

Now it’s up to Senator Crapo and Senator Risch. 

Senator Crapo:
Idaho Falls:  (208) 522-9779
Boise: (208) 334-1776
Lewiston (208) 743-1492
Twin Falls Phone: (208) 734-2515
Pocatello: (208) 236-6775
Coeur d’Alene (208) 664-5490
Washington D.C.: (202) 224-6142

Senator Risch 
Boise: (208) 342-7985 
Coeur d’Alene: (208) 667-6130 
Idaho Falls: (208) 523-5541 
Lewiston: (208) 743-0792 
Pocatello: (208) 236-6817 
Twin Falls (208) 734-6780 
Washington DC: (202) 224-2752 


The Upton Amendment


The McCarthy Amendment


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