June 22, 2017

Whitehouse Statement on Senate Republicans’ Health Care Bill

Washington, DC – Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, released the following statement on Senate Republicans’ draft legislation to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, which was released today:

“Despite all the secrecy of this abysmal process, this bill is pretty familiar:  a ‘mean’ give-away to the wealthy at the expense of Americans who rely on the Affordable Care Act.  It would gut Medicaid with even deeper cuts than the wretched House version.  This will blow huge holes in state budgets, forcing terrible choices between opioid treatment, care for seniors, and students with disabilities.  And that’s just the beginning.  It goes after women’s health care.  It would allow insurance companies to charge seniors more, and sell plans that don’t offer the basic care Americans expect.  It would be bad for Rhode Islanders.

“Jack Reed and I were on the HELP Committee when we voted on over 160 Republican amendments to the Affordable Care Act.  We held dozens of public meetings and hearings in our Committee alone.  Then on the Senate floor we spent weeks debating the bill.  Republicans complained that this was not open enough, but now are trying to jam a bill through with no input from Democrats or the American people.  Sure enough, an awful, closed-door process has yielded an awful bill.

“Earlier this month, a Republican aide said they didn’t want to show America this bill because they’re ‘not stupid.’  Now I see exactly what they meant.  Trumpcare 2.0 is a tax cut for millionaires and billionaires dressed up as a health care bill.  It robs care from hard-working Americans to score political points for the President.”


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