The Alliance for Retired Americans join with Congresswomen Shea-Porter and Kuster in opposing the repeal of the Affordable Care Act.
This week, Republicans in the US House took the first bold step to strip millions of Americans of their healthcare by repealing the Affordable Care Act.
Repealing the signature healthcare law would have significant impacts on all working people and seniors. Americans would see a massive jump in prescription drug prices as the ACA closed the “donut hole” in Medicare. People with pre-existing condition could once again be discriminated against leaving them unable to acquire any insurance at all. Families would no longer be able to cover their children up to age 25 and preventative care for women would no longer be covered.
Richard Fiesta, Executive Director of the Alliance for Retired Americans, released the following:
“With today’s vote, 227 members of the House of Representatives started the process of eliminating many valuable and affordable health care benefits that American retirees rely on.
From free wellness checks and preventive screenings to lowering prescription drug prices for Medicare beneficiaries, to eliminating pre-existing conditions and limiting what older Americans not yet eligible for Medicare can be charged for insurance, the ACA has made health care better and more affordable for millions.
Depending on the actions of the House Committees that will take the next steps, all of these benefits are now in jeopardy.
The burden for developing a replacement plan that improves health care and keeps it affordable is on these members. Retirees are watching and will loudly defend the guaranteed Medicare and Medicaid health care benefits they have earned through a lifetime of hard work.
The price for health care in America is likely to rise quickly, to the detriment of millions of workers and retirees.”
The New Hampshire Congressional delegation is united in opposition to repealing the ACA.
“Today’s vote by House Republicans sets in motion a dangerous and irresponsible plan to strip health care coverage from millions of Americans, including 118,000 people in New Hampshire,” said Congresswoman Shea-Porter. “They broke their promise to American families – there is no replacement. New Hampshire families deserve better: Congress should work to build on the progress we’ve made so far, making health care more accessible and more affordable, instead of going back to the days before the ACA, when thousands of Granite Staters were locked out of coverage.”
“I am also profoundly disappointed that the Republican leadership in the House rejected my attempt to protect seniors and those with disabilities. Speaker Ryan is using procedural gimmicks to force repeal legislation through the House and destroy what we have accomplished: coverage for people with preexisting conditions, Medicaid expansion, adequate coverage for women and seniors, and no-cost preventive health care screenings and services. Protections for millions of Americans are being jeopardized for political purposes,” Shea-Porter added.
Repealing the Affordable Care Act would strip coverage from 118,000 people in New Hampshire, and 13,000 people in the state could lose their jobs.
In New Hampshire, the ACA:
- Requires insurance providers to cover the 600,000 New Hampshire residents with preexisting conditions
- Lowered the uninsured rate by 43%
- Saved seniors an average of $1,047 on prescriptions
- Provided substance abuse treatment services for 7,500 people
- Covered 9,000 young adults on their parents’ health insurance
Shea-Porter offered her own amendment to protect the most vulnerable in our communities. Shea-Porter’s amendment stated that nothing in the Budget Resolution should allow for the denial of care based on patient age or disability.
Unfortunately, the Rules Committee refused to allow the House to vote on this common-sense proposal to protect our seniors and those with disabilities.
Shea-Porter has been a fierce advocate for keeping and improving the health care law. She successfully led the fight to close the Medicare Part D doughnut hole and save seniors thousands on prescription drug costs. While the House has voted repeatedly to destroy the law’s critical protections for all Americans, Shea-Porter has consistently voted to improve the law instead.
“It’s disappointing that Republicans in Congress have moved ahead with efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act without regard for the negative impact it will have on millions of Americans and thousands of Granite Staters,” said Congresswoman Kuster. “I’ve expressed my willingness to work across the aisle to make improvements to the law and foster a system that works for everyone. In the past, I have joined my Republican colleagues to make changes to the ACA, and I firmly believe that is the course we should follow.
“If the ACA is repealed, seniors on Medicare would see the costs of their prescription drugs increase. The Republican budget would also defund Planned Parenthood, reducing access to healthcare for thousands of Granite State women. In New Hampshire, one-in-ten of our friends and neighbors are benefiting from the ACA, and Medicaid expansion has improved access to mental health and addiction recovery services. Young adults are able to stay on their families’ plans and those with preexisting conditions cannot be denied coverage. We simply can’t jeopardize this progress,” Kuster added.
Kuster joined 30 of her colleagues in a letter to Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, offering to be constructive partners in improving the law.
The repeal process is far from over and the fight has only begun. We must stand united against that assault on working people and the Republicans plan to strip vital healthcare options from millions of Americans.