1. Action Alert
  2. Economic Justice

FINAL VOTE: Tell your senators to vote NO on health care bill

By Amelia Kegan, July 27, 2017

Within roughly the next 24 hours, the Senate will vote on final passage of their health care bill. At this moment, senators are debating on amendments and deciding what that final bill will look like.

But it doesn't matter what amendments get added. This bill can't be fixed.

Call now: (202) 224-3121

A new strategy has emerged in the Senate, and it has us very worried. Senators are proposing to replace the existing bill by offering an amendment that would only repeal the individual and employer mandate. This may sound like a less severe version of a full repeal, but it's not.

If this “skinny repeal” passes, it will go to a conference committee to work out a compromise with the House-passed American Health Care Act (AHCA), which leaves 22 million more people uninsured and ends the Medicaid program as we know it. The AHCA will be the basis of the compromise, and we are certain that any bill that emerges will leave millions more uninsured, end the Medicaid expansion, cut the program by hundreds of billions of dollars, and ends the guaranteed entitlement nature of Medicaid.

A vote for final passage—whether on a “skinny repeal,” the AHCA, the BCRA, or any amended version—is a vote for deep Medicaid cuts and millions more to become uninsured. The urgency of this situation makes your advocacy essential.

Moreover, moving to conference would enable an even less transparent process. There are no rules governing conference committee participants, no rules about how visible their decision making must be. There won’t be any drafts for review or public hearings. These decisions are moral decisions that will threaten the lives of millions of people—they should not be made behind closed doors.

Only by moving away from this bill do we see Congress able to move forward in a bipartisan manner to address the real problems in our health care system. Even if you've already called, please call again. Your senators need to hear that every proposal on the table—the House AHCA bill, the Senate BCRA bill, and this new “skinny repeal” proposal—is unacceptable.

Amelia Kegan

  • Legislative Director, Domestic Policy

Amelia Kegan leads the domestic policy team's work in analyzing legislation, advocating on Capitol Hill, and developing legislative strategy. Prior to coming to FCNL, Amelia worked at a variety of other national non-profits in D.C. and Chicago, focusing on federal budget, tax, and low-income policy.