Senate Champions Make Me Want to Stand up & Fight for the ACA
This week opponents of the health care law are laying the groundwork to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA), otherwise known as “Obamacare.” If they are successful, they take away health insurance from 30 million people across the country. The ACA has been a game changer for so many. So when I think about the devastating impact repeal will have—particularly on women, LGBTQ folks, low-income individuals, and communities of color—it can make me want to curl up in a ball. Thankfully, health champions in Congress are fighting back. Last night, several Senators stood up to express their support for the law across all platforms—tweeting, hosting conference calls with advocates, hosting a Facebook live, and holding the Senate floor to speak about the importance of the ACA for more than five hours. It was inspiring to watch. So for those, like me, who might need to be coaxed out from under your covers, here are five inspiring moments when the Senators made me want to stand up and fight back.
1. When Tim Kaine (D-VA) made clear the ACA is about more than just insurance. The ACA “is about peace of mind. It is about coverage, but it is also the peace of mind that you need as a parent to know that your child will be protected if you are ill or if your child is injured… That is what [the ACA] has done for tens of millions of Americans.”
2. When Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) shared her own story about having a pre-existing condition as a child. Because of a previous illness, when her grandparents tried to find her an insurance plan “they couldn’t find it from any insurer at any price, and at 9 years old I had been branded with those magic words: ‘pre-existing’ condition.” Thanks to the ACA, that can’t happen anymore.
3. When Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) reminded us of some of the folks who will suffer if the ACA is repealed. “If the ACA is repealed, nearly 30 million Americans could lose access to health insurance, increasing the number of uninsured by 103 percent. More than 80 percent of these Americans are members of working families.”
4. When Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) told it like it is– Calling the ACA repeal effort “one of the most reckless and irresponsible things that’s ever been proposed in this Congress….Repeal and run is for cowards.”
5. When Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said what we are all thinking. “Scrap the whole thing and go back, back to a chaotic marketplace, inconsistent coverage, skyrocketing premiums? No way. Back to 40 million uninsured Americans, back to discriminating against women and Americans with preexisting conditions? No way.”
Thanks to these Senators and so many more in Congress who took a stand—and continue to stand strong—raising their voices in defense of the ACA. At NWLC, we’re committed to fighting alongside our champions in Congress to protect the affordable and lifesaving care that millions of women and families depend on.