Healthcare: We Won One for Children but prepare for next battle

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Marian Wright Edelman. Photo: Elizabethtown College--Flickr

Thank you, thank you, thank you to all of you across the country who over these last months have shared with Members of Congress and each other what the devastating House and Senate health care bills would mean for your own children and families as well as those of colleagues, friends, patients and others.

Your outpouring of support for Medicaid and other key pieces of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), together with others, really made a difference. The defeat very early Friday morning of the “Skinny Repeal” bill that became the misnamed “Health Care Freedom Act” was a huge win for America’s children and families.

That version of the repeal bill would have made 16 million more children and adults uninsured and raised premiums by 20 percent and because it would have been considered together with the terrible House of Representatives health bill in a joint House-Senate conference committee, it would have ended Medicaid as we know it.

Senators Collins and Murkowski stood strong for a long time and were joined by Senator McCain to defeat the bill and end the immediate threats to health care.

They deserve your thanks as do all others in the Senate who understood the harms and voted against various versions of the Senate Republican Leadership’s series of devastating ACA repeal bills.

A major battle has been won – and our efforts to move forward, not backwards, must continue. Funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) must be extended by the end of September, and we must fight back any efforts to cut and cap Medicaid as Congress considers action on the 2018 Budget Resolution or tax reform bills.

Thank you for your stepping out on behalf of children.

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