Tsongas Statement On GOP Pulling Health Care Plan
Mar 29, 2017 12:43PM
By Theresa Gilman
(Editor's Note: the following information was provided by the office of Congresswoman Niki Tsongas.)
WASHINGTON – Friday evening, the House of Representatives were scheduled to vote on the American Health Care Act (AHCA), the Republican bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Shortly before the vote was scheduled to take place, Republican leaders pulled the vote from consideration.
Congresswoman Niki Tsongas strongly opposed the Republican health care plan and released the following statement:
“The GOP spent seven years decrying the Affordable Care Act, working assiduously to undermine it, and only ever voting to repeal it. Instead of working with Democrats to build upon the ACA’s success – health care coverage for 20 million previously uninsured people, slowed growth of health care costs, and essential reforms that benefit every American – Republicans rushed ahead with a misguided and unfixable bill that was indifferent to the devastating impact it would have on American families. They ignored warnings from the AARP, the American Medical Association and numerous other doctor, nurse, hospital, mental health, and other health care organizations; they disregarded widespread public opposition.
“As a result, Republican leaders were forced to withdraw their inadequate health care plan from the Floor because it lacked enough support to pass. This, even after Republicans spent the past two days making startling, misguided concessions to the farthest right faction of their party, which eliminated coverage of essential health benefits, like maternity and newborn care, pediatric services, mental health, preventative care and more.
“The reality is, “Trumpcare” was indefensible from the outset. Under the bill, 24 million Americans would lose health care coverage, Medicare and Medicaid would be significantly cut and destabilized, premiums would soar and the wealthiest of Americans would get a tax break while increased burden was placed on seniors, the sick, low income families and millions more American families. The GOP plan undermined women’s health care, gutted consumer protections, and would have negative ramifications for many people who get coverage through their employer. Recent reports have even said the bill would destroy nearly 2 million jobs nationwide. And disturbingly, in the midst of a nationwide opioid epidemic, the GOP plan would prevent millions from receiving life-saving substance abuse treatments and programs.
“Reforming America’s health care system to bring costs down, make health care more affordable, improve the quality of care, and expand coverage to the uninsured is a complex, monumental task that requires a comprehensive and open-minded approach – something President Obama and Democrats in Congress have long understood, and Republicans seem to be just now discovering for themselves.
“In their irresponsible rush to dismantle the Affordable Care Act, the GOP concocted an inadequate and destructive health care plan that would have a detrimental impact it on American families, the American health care system and public health in general.
“I am committed to working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to continue seeking ways to make health care more affordable and accessible for all Americans.”