The ACA repeal bill, the "American Health Care Act," (AHCA) barely squeaked out of the House of Representatives last Thursday 217-213, with just 20 Republicans defecting and voting against it. The bill that passed was, in many respects, worse than the original that was rejected in March, giving states the ability to seek waivers to requirements that insurance companies cover essential health benefits like maternity care and prescription drugs, and to restrictions about how much they could charge people with preexisting conditions (like everyone living with HIV, among countless others).
Still, the bill has a long road ahead before it could become law. The Senate has expressed little interest in taking up the bill as it is currently written, and the margin of Republicans' majority in the Senate is much narrower. We need to make sure our Representatives in the House know how we feel about their votes -- whether positive or negative -- and we need to start applying the same pressure to our Senators now.
Get the Facts
- Get ready to publicly shame Representatives in the House who voted in favor of the bill. Congress is in recess this week, and your representatives are back in their districts. Whether they are holding town hall meetings or not, make it your duty to show up and ask them why they voted to take health care away from 24 million Americans and make it more expensive and less comprehensive for everyone else. Here are some tips on town halls and district office visits from Indivisible. (If your representative voted no on the AHCA -- regardless of their party affiliation -- don't forget to thank them for their vote!)
- The time to apply pressure to your Senators is now! Even Republicans in the Senate acknowledge that the AHCA faces an uphill battle there. Whether your Senator is a Republican or a Democrat, they need to hear from you that any vote that jeopardizes access to affordable, quality health care for everyone is unacceptable and that they will be held accountable for their vote. Call your Senators today and tell them you expect them to uphold the ACA and improve upon it, not destroy its protections and promise.
- Take the PWN pledge to keep fighting for health care for all, and stay tuned for more ways you can help protect and improve health care at the federal level and in your state.
"Hi, my name is _____ and I live in [city, zip]. I'm a constituent of Senator ____. I am calling Sen. ____ to urge [him/her] to reject any ACA repeal and replace bill. The AHCA passed by the House is cruel, unjust and unacceptable, and could leave tens of millions of Americans uninsured or underinsured, especially those who are older, poorer and who have preexisting conditions. All Americans deserve better. Please do not send us backward. We need comprehensive health care coverage for everyone."