Excerpts from NHDP Press Call on Ayotte and Rubio’s Votes to Defund Planned Parenthood and Repeal Medicaid Expansion
CONCORD, N.H. – Today, the New Hampshire Democratic Party held a press conference call on Senators Kelly Ayotte and Marco Rubio and their damaging, partisan votes to repeal New Hampshire’s successful bipartisan Medicaid expansion and kick 40,000 Granite Staters off of their health care while defunding Planned Parenthood in one fell swoop. While both are scheduled to appear at the same Republican women’s event in New Hampshire today, former New Hampshire Democratic Party Chair Kathy Sullivan and New Hampshire State House Deputy Democratic Leader Cindy Rosenwald spoke out on their disastrous votes.
Former NH Democratic Party Chair, Kathy Sullivan:
“Sen. Ayotte is appearing with Sen. Rubio today at a Republican women’s event on the Seacoast and they will likely tout that vote as if it’s something to be proud of. But it’s not something to be proud of. They should be ashamed for that vote. This was a vote to defund Planned Parenthood, which helps thousands of women and their families here in New Hampshire. This was a vote to take away health care coverage for more than 40,000 people who were covered by New Hampshire’s bipartisan Medicaid expansion.
“But we shouldn’t be surprised by these votes. This is Ayotte’s 5th vote to repeal the Affordable Care Act and her 6th to defund Planned Parenthood — and Ayotte even voted against a proposal from so-called ‘centrist Republicans’ including Maine’s Susan Collins who wanted to maintain funding for Planned Parenthood. And Rubio is trying to win over Granite State voters by pushing for ACA repeal and opposing a woman’s right to choose without exceptions for rape and incest survivors.
“Ayotte and Rubio’s votes make it abundantly clear that they aren’t interested in supporting New Hampshire’s women and families – they’re interested in dialing back the clock when it comes to women’s health, leaving women and families without the health care they need…
“And speaking of health care, over 40,000 Granite Staters receive their health care through New Hampshire’s bipartisan Medicaid expansion led by Governor Hassan. Kelly Ayotte voted to take coverage away from 40,000 in our state. And Rubio? Just like every other Republican presidential candidate, he’s vowed to take health care away from millions nation-wide.
“They’re clearly comfortable with putting New Hampshire’s health and safety on the line. After all, they also voted last night to continue allowing known or suspected terrorists to purchase guns and explosives!”
New Hampshire State House Deputy Democratic Leader Cindy Rosenwald:
“Kelly Ayotte and Marco Rubio voted to repeal New Hampshire’s successful bipartisan Medicaid expansion. A bipartisan plan that was the result of members of both parties coming together to get results for New Hampshire’s people and businesses. Ayotte and Rubio aren’t just out-of-touch with voters across our state — they’re even out-of-touch with Republicans in the State House who support this crucial plan.
“Repealing this plan would mean that more than 40,000 New Hampshire residents get the rug pulled out from underneath them and will lose their health care. Kicking tens of thousands of people off their health care would be bad enough, but it’s made worse because of the substance abuse crisis here in New Hampshire. This vote would eliminate substance abuse treatment coverage for a huge group of Granite Staters…
“If that funding from Medicaid expansion goes away, providers will no longer be able to function the same and will be left with costs they can no longer afford. Now is the time to be expanding access to substance abuse treatment, not taking it away.
“We’ve lost almost a person a day to overdose this year in New Hampshire.
“The Medicaid expansion is a vital component of our efforts to reverse that trend and save lives. But Kelly Ayotte and Marco Rubio voted to eliminate it.”
Yesterday, Jennifer Frizzell, Vice President of Public Policy for Planned Parenthood Action Fund of New Hampshire released the following statement after Kelly Ayotte voted to defund Planned Parenthood:
“Planned Parenthood condemns Kelly Ayotte for once again abandoning the women, men, and young people of New Hampshire who rely on the critical preventative services at Planned Parenthood health centers. Thousands come to our health centers for care each year for services like breast and cervical cancer screenings, birth control, STD/STI tests – and for many we are the only provider they will see all year.”
“Women’s health should not be a partisan issue. We are grateful that several moderate Republican Senators, including Maine’s Senator Collins, recognize this. Yet, once again, Senator Ayotte has followed the directives of outside special interest groups instead of protecting the well-being of the women of New Hampshire. Here in New Hampshire and across our country, those who stand with Planned Parenthood understand that women, men and young people should be able to receive the care they need with health insurance from the provider they choose.”
“Senator Ayotte should understand that her votes and her actions have real consequences for the health and well-being of her constituents. It’s profoundly disappointing that politicians like Ayotte continue their constant attacks against women’s health mere days after the recent tragedy that occurred in Colorado Springs. While Ayotte demonstrates extreme indifference to the events of the last week, Planned Parenthood of Northern New England will remain focused on the safety and well-being of our patients and our continued commitment to providing high quality health care- no matter what.”