The Republican-controlled U.S. Senate has voted towards a repeal of the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. Voting began on Wednesday evening, and strung out until early hours of Thursday. The vote itself does not repeal the ACA, but it does set up the lengthy process of getting rid of the massive health care law. It is expected that on Friday, the bill will be sent to the House of Representatives for a clearing vote. “The Senate just took an important step toward repealing and replacing Obamacare by passing the resolution that provides the legislative tools necessary to actually repeal this failed law while we move ahead with smarter health care policies,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said in a statement.
According to Urban Institute, approximately 30 million people would affected if the bill goes through, leaving them uninsured. Meanwhile, the Kaiser Family Foundation says that at least 52 million non-elderly adult Americans with pre-existing health conditions would also be left uninsurable, 27% of those under the age of 65. In a poll issued by the same family foundation in August of 2016, 53% of people reported to have a family member with a pre-existing condition.
The idea of millions of people having their health care taken away overnight is absolutely terrifying–the Senate is acting without the knowledge of the American people.
The Democratic party fought hard against the repeal of the ACA, while the GOP voted to abolish it whilst the American people slept, knowing that offices would be closed in case anyone decided to protest. The Republican party claims they will replace the ACA, but no evidence of such has surfaced, “Republican leaders say they will work closely with Mr. Trump developing legislation to repeal and replace the health care law, but it is unclear exactly how his team will participate in that effort.” On Wednesday, Trump offered to have his own plan replace the ACA, once his nominee for secretary of health and human services, Representative Tom Price, Republican of Georgia, is sworn into office.
A study conducted by Harvard Medial School and Cambridge Health Alliance, confirmed that 45,000 annual deaths in the United States have all been caused by the lack of health insurance. The GOP is placing thousands of American lives in danger all for what they believe is “progress”. It is even known that states won by Trump, have the highest Obamacare enrollment.
The repeal of the Affordable Care Act will not happen simultaneously, there are still many steps towards its total termination. The House of Representatives still has to pass the budget, draft the repeal bill, vote on such bill, and send it back to the Senate. In that case, the Senate will then debate on the bill, and vote on the repeal. The final step would have Trump sign the bill into law, which could take months to achieve. Even so, millions of Americans who rely on the ACA would be in danger.