Bernie Sanders is doing a good job leading protests against the shivery, stealth, Koch Brothers/James Buchanan satire of a “law.” What are people who would deprive millions of health care with no back up, would enable huge corporations to gouge even higher prices from those unable to pay? At minimum, everyone of them has forgotten compassion and makes unreconstructed Scrooge look like a public benefactor. They are “whistling Dixie.” Shine the light on them.
Call today, call now, go demonstrate if there is one near you. Even Democrats got out in front of the Capitol yesterday for a spontaneous demonstration of several hundred passers by – Elizabeth Warren gave a powerful speech. In this system which denies the vote to so many of our fellow citizens, only protest from below, led by ADAPT, has held back this monster act – let us all join in in whatever way seems fitting. Now is the time…
New York Times
The Republican leadership’s strategy for repealing Obamacare has depended on secrecy.
No hearings. Little public debate. Few town-hall meetings. Rushed votes. And, in a depressing spectacle yesterday, a Senate vote to move a bill forward even though neither the senators themselves nor their constituents know which bill is actually under consideration.
“I have covered every health bill in Congress since 1986,” Julie Rovner, the chief Washington correspondent for Kaiser Health News, tweeted this week. “There has NEVER been anything this nuts before in terms of process. Never.”
Let’s be clear about what could happen now: More than 20 million Americans could lose their health insurance. Millions more could see the quality of their insurance deteriorate. If this happens, people would ultimately be denied medical care or receive worse care as a result. A Times editorial has more details.
Is there anything that concerned citizens can do? Yes, there is.
“The next 24 hours are critical. The public blowback must be immediate and overwhelming,” Topher Spiro, a former Congressional aide who opposes the various bills, wrote yesterday.
Remember: The strategy for passing the bill depends on secrecy. Mitch McConnell, Paul Ryan and their allies understand that their plans are deeply unpopular. So the best way to prevent them from taking health coverage from people is to call attention to their efforts. On Tuesday night, one Obamacare replacement bill had already failed.
Spiro suggested that people with Democratic senators call them to urge them to fight as hard as possible, by filibustering and offering unlimited amendments. Locking in the tentative no votes from Republican senators Lisa Murkowski (of Alaska) and Susan Collins (of Maine) is also critical.
Meanwhile, people who live in Ohio, Nevada, West Virginia, Arizona, Wisconsin, Kentucky, Kansas, Colorado, Louisiana and Utah are represented by Republican senators who could provide the swing vote.
Senate leadership wants to pass a bill this week, Marianna Sotomayor of NBC reported. One worrisome possibility, as Senator Chris Murphy noted, is the Senate passing a bare-bones bill, under the guise of fixing it during so-called conference negotiations with the House. That would almost certainly lead to massive losses in insurance coverage.
If you were ever tempted to get involved in politics, now would be a good time — to make a phone call or urge friends and relatives to do so. And if you’re a United States senator who is tempted to put Americans’ well-being above partisan loyalty, now would be a really good time.