Today, I am incredibly relieved and encouraged by the outcome of the Senate vote on the last ditch attempt to rush through the repeal of the Affordable Care Act.
Even without direct cuts to Medicaid, the “skinny repeal” bill that was narrowly voted down would have resulted in a loss of health care coverage for 16 million consumers. It was clear from the very beginning that this bill was merely a shell which would ultimately allow GOP leaders of the Senate and House to continue to work in secret to create yet another full “repeal and replace” proposal. Further, it’s almost certain that this would have once again included the kinds of disastrous cuts to Medicaid we’ve seen proposed over the last few months.
I sincerely hope members of both parties can now begin to work together to improve on the strengths of the ACA to make quality, affordable health care available to more Americans—not fewer. Now is the time to hold public hearings and work openly to come up with thoughtful, bipartisan solutions to reduce the cost of premiums and deductibles, while at the same time stabilizing the insurance marketplace. With bipartisan cooperation and American ingenuity, I absolutely believe this is possible
In closing, I want to thank all of YOU who have called, written letters, emailed and spoken in person with your Senators and Congressmen about this issue. Every time we’ve asked you to act, you’ve responded, and because you were willing to take action—alongside millions of others across the country—we now have a real chance to see meaningful improvements to our nation’s health care system.
We’re not finished. Much work remains before quality, affordable health care coverage is available for every child, woman, and man in South Carolina. I am so grateful to know that you will be with us every step of the way toward this goal. I truly believe we can achieve it…if we work together!