On Thursday, Mitch McConnell finally unveiled the Senate's secret health care bill, their version of the American Health Care Act, which was passed by the House in May to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.
To say the bill was met with a lukewarm reception would be generous.
Democrats in Congress universally condemned the bill, calling it "meaner" than the House bill, "heartless" and "cruel."
This morning the @SenateGOP released their #HealthcareBill - it proves #Trumpcare won't put Americans' health first. https://t.co/riN6m0igss— Chuck Schumer (@Chuck Schumer) 1498153153.0
Even Republicans in the Senate were less than enthused, four of whom came out against the bill within hours of its release (to pass the legislation, McConnell can only afford to lose two of his caucus.)
Today I join senators Lee, Johnson, and Cruz in opposition to the #HealthcareBill. Read here:… https://t.co/fH5bRswqNC— Senator Rand Paul (@Senator Rand Paul) 1498154474.0
But perhaps the harshest critic of the bill was President Obama, who posted an epic and eloquent response on Facebook.
Health care has always been about something bigger than politics: it's about the character of our country. https://t.co/UqLO14Hef7— Barack Obama (@Barack Obama) 1498160468.0
In it, President Obama rails against the Republican bill, saying:
The Senate bill, unveiled today, is not a health care bill. It’s a massive transfer of wealth from middle-class and poor families to the richest people in America. It hands enormous tax cuts to the rich and to the drug and insurance industries, paid for by cutting health care for everybody else.
The former President lays out why he and Democrats passed the ACA originally and what the stakes are for the American people.
We didn’t fight for the Affordable Care Act for more than a year in the public square for any personal or political gain – we fought for it because we knew it would save lives, prevent financial misery, and ultimately set this country we love on a better, healthier course.
He urges Senate Republicans to think twice before voting to harm millions of Americans.
I hope our Senators ask themselves – what will happen to the Americans grappling with opioid addiction who suddenly lose their coverage? What will happen to pregnant mothers, children with disabilities, poor adults and seniors who need long-term care once they can no longer count on Medicaid? What will happen if you have a medical emergency when insurance companies are once again allowed to exclude the benefits you need, send you unlimited bills, or set unaffordable deductibles? What impossible choices will working parents be forced to make if their child’s cancer treatment costs them more than their life savings?
And asks the American people to step up and make their voices heard to defeat this bill.
...it remains my fervent hope that we step back and try to deliver on what the American people need.
That might take some time and compromise between Democrats and Republicans. But I believe that’s what people want to see. I believe it would demonstrate the kind of leadership that appeals to Americans across party lines. And I believe that it’s possible – if you are willing to make a difference again. If you’re willing to call your members of Congress. If you are willing to visit their offices. If you are willing to speak out, let them and the country know, in very real terms, what this means for you and your family.
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