Americans’ access to health care "is in serious jeopardy," according to Sen. Jeff Merkley, a Democrat from Oregon. "After spending the better part of a decade vowing to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act," he said, "the Republicans scrambled and came up with a health care plan that is a combination of the terrible and the dangerously bad.
"Their plan slashes Medicaid, which would put health care out of reach for millions and jeopardize nursing home care for many. It would dramatically raise the cost of health care for older Americans. Rural hospitals and health clinics would be deeply damaged. It even eliminates the $1 billion fund that helps the CDC and state public health agencies fight disease outbreaks, like Zika and Ebola.
"Why, you might ask, would anyone support this TrumpCare plan, which is opposed by nurses, doctors, hospitals, the AARP and scores of patient groups?
"Here's what you should know. It gives big tax breaks to high-income Americans while raising taxes for low-income Americans. This bill includes a tax cut that will average $25,000 per year for the top 1 percent. And the cherry on top? There's a hidden tax break in the bill that rewards health insurance companies who want to pay their executives more than $500,000 a year."
According to Sen. Merkley, it shouldn't be "an excuse to hand out tax cuts to Republicans’ millionaire pals or favored industries."
House Speaker Paul Ryan said he "can’t say how many people would lose coverage under the new legislation" — and that it will be '"up to people” to decide whether they want to purchase coverage. And at what cost?
Beau Weisman, Editor