Fight for health care is a fight for people’s lives

As this issue of The Winsted Journal goes to press, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced the delay of the Senate’s recess to the third week in August in order to work on a health care reform bill to change the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

Back in May, the House of Representatives passed a repeal and replace measure for the ACA. However, the measure has not been approved by the Senate.

At a recent town hall style meeting at the Licia and Mason Beekley Community Library on July 6, Congressman John Larson (D-1) told an audience of over 100 people that, as reported by the Congressional Budget Office, under the House bill 23 million people would lose their health insurance coverage, while under the Senate bill 22 million people would lose their health insurance coverage.

At the same meeting, Larson admitted that the ACA was not perfect and it still needs work instead of a full repeal and replace.

Ensuring accessible and affordable health care for Americans is something that should not be up for vigorous arguments and debates.

The fact is that ripping the ACA to shreds will have dire consequences for millions of Americans, both young and old.

Last year as he was campaigning, President Donald J. Trump promised that he would repeal and replace the ACA.

Trump spoke as if he wanted to do this, not to make the lives of Americans better, but as if he wanted to fulfill a personal political vendetta against the Obama administration.

In sound bytes all across the political television news spectrum, congressmen and senators who support repealing and replacing the ACA sound exactly the same way: It’s not about trying to help Americans obtain easier and affordable access to health care, it’s more about fulfilling a political vendetta against a political party, even if 22 to 23 million American lives are put at risk.

As Larson said on July 6, “Health care isn’t about being Democrat or Republican, it’s about being American.”

Over the next few weeks, McConnell, along with his fellow senators, will be looking for ways to pass a bill to repeal and replace the ACA.

The ultimate solution would be for McConnell to reach across the political aisle and talk to senators from the Democratic party in order to not kill the ACA, but instead find ways to improve it.

Any political vendetta or grudge is not worth the lives of millions of Americans.