Rep. Cathy Rodgers Defends Voting Against Obamacare because Her Son Has a PreExisting Condition. Come Again?
ON May 4, the Washington Post published Rep. Cathy Rodgers op-ed where she detailed the reason she voted for Speaker Paul Ryan’s Americans Health Care Act (AHCA), a bill that ultimately repealed the Affordable Health Care Act (aka Obamacare).
“It’s the people we love — our children, friends, and neighbors — who are the inspiration behind our American Health Care Act which we passed in the House on Thursday.”
In the piece, Rep. Rodgers iterated she was moved by late-night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel's’ plea to Republicans to not gut the Affordable Health Care Act (aka Obamacare) because everyone deserves care.
Kimmel’s son has a heart murmur and required surgery after he was born, and his son will need more surgery in the future. Thankfully, Kimmel is in the position to afford medical care for his son, but many Americans don’t have such luck.
For those not familiar with Rep. Cathy Rodgers, please note, she has a son with Down syndrome. Thus she can relate to Kimmel, which makes her position all-the-more insulting and infuriating that she voted to support Speaker Ryan’s AHCA (aka Trumpcare), because it makes way to discriminate against people with pre-existing conditions.
Rep. Rodgers believes, “Protections for children such as Cole Rodgers and Billy Kimmel have long existed, as they should. And despite what people are saying, House Republicans aren’t seeking to strip these protections — or anyone’s protections — away.”
Actually, it literally does just that, and it forces people with preexisting conditions to purchase high-deductible plans (if the market allows them to buy in general). Struggling Americans, like those in urban cities or rural communities, will feel the immediate negative effect - and more than likely go back to having no insurance - seeking primary care at emergency rooms.
For Rodgers to declare the Trumpcare plan is better for her son with Down syndrome over Obamacare is total bullocks. After all, Rodgers is a representative who is paid handsomely, and she can afford adequate health insurance. Thus, I refuse to drink the Kool-Aid Rep. Rodgers is attempting to sell Americans in her article, because what she suggests about Trumpcare is the exact opposite. The free market and price control doesn’t exist in Trumpcare. What Rodgers is doing is lying to the American public.
Rodgers is also ignoring facts, 55 percent of Americans now support Obamacare and don’t want Republicans to repeal it, but rather to reform parts in need of improvement. But that doesn’t seem to matter because Republicans and President Trump need some kind of win - but the only thing they’re going to win is angry constituents at Town Hall meetings (again).
Rodgers goes on to write, “When Obamacare was introduced, Republicans and Democrats knew the status quo wasn’t working. But Republicans rejected the notion that to help 2 million people with preexisting conditions get access to care, we needed a 2,000-page bill that transformed one-sixth of the economy.” [Note: The GAO estimates about 112 million Americans have preexisting conditions]
Rep. Rodgers is right, both Republicans and Democrats are concerned about the status quo of insurance companies that have a history of price gouging and denying care to Americans. In fact, Obamacare was a conservative plan conceived by The Heritage Foundation. Yet, the moment Obama gave his stamp of approval to the bill; conservatives did a 360-degree switch and hated their own creation because the optics of siding with Obama was a mortal sin.
So now we’re back in the dark ages of health insurance, thanks to the Freedom Caucus and Tea Party. Here’s what the Trumpcare bill repeals:
1. Ban on denying care to people with preexisting conditions
2. Ban on lifetime caps
3. Expansion of Medicaid
4. Subsidies for low-income households
5. Mental illness services
6. No deductibles’ for general checkups (i.e. pap smears, blood work)
7. No deductibles for contraception (i.e. birth control, morning after pill)
Under the first version of the bill House Republicans tried to pass a few weeks ago, the CBO estimated about 24 million would lose access to healthcare. That’s great (not), considering, the ACA was successful in getting 20 million people access to care that otherwise didn’t have before.
In the new bill, sexual assault victims, victims of domestic violence, and PTSD is now considered a preexisting condition, and the ACHA will change Medicaid to vouchers, which reduces the amount of coverage. Does any of this sound like progress to you?
Fact Check reports Congress exempted themselves from the many adverse effects of this draconian bill, “For procedural reasons, the bill passed by House Republicans exempted lawmakers from some of its effects. But a stand-alone bill passed unanimously would do away with that exemption if the legislation becomes law.” That’s rich. As Americans struggle to make ends meet, Congress gets another handout paid by our tax dollars.
“At each point of our process to repeal Obamacare, we have not lost sight of our responsibility to the most vulnerable in our communities,” writes Rep. Rodgers. Yeah, I’m still not drinking that Kool-Aid.
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Image by: Gage Skidmore