Cummings Condemns House Passage of TrumpCare
Washington, D.C. (May 4, 2017)—Today, Congressman Elijah E. Cummings (D-MD) issued the following statement on the House passage of TrumpCare:
“Today’s vote on TrumpCare was a loss for the American people and a moral failure on the part of my Republican colleagues.
“The American people are organized against TrumpCare. My constituents called, they emailed, they came to my office and to town halls to share their stories of life before the ACA, and to tell me that they have no interest in going back. I know that my Republican colleagues heard from their constituents as well—they should listen to them.
“Who is this bill meant to help? The majority of the American people oppose it; groups representing seniors, hospitals, and doctors oppose it; and until two days ago, many Republican House Members opposed it.
“If my colleagues are interested in improving healthcare for all Americans, they should work with Democrats to improve upon the progress we have made. Instead, they have twisted arms to rush this flawed bill to the House floor. If this bill is signed into law, we all lose, but none more than the working poor and those in chronic need of care. This bill is a truly shameful and unacceptable answer to Americans’ health care needs.”
Many residents in Maryland’s Seventh Congressional District are better-off because of protections in the Affordable Care Act, some of their stories follow:
• “My son got sick in his second year of college, and had to come home for a semester for medical treatments. I was lucky that the part of Obamacare kicked in in December, just in time so he could withdraw from classes without failing. If it hadn't been for Obamacare, his medical bills would have bankrupted me, I would have lost my house, his education - everything! ” – Rosalie, C. from Columbia, MD
• “I have two daughters recently graduated from college who are just starting to make their way in the world. Because I can now carry them on my health coverage until they are 26, they are able to save more of their small salaries for things like retirement and their future education or domiciles.” – Peter G. from Columbia, MD
• “My wife and I own a small business on Main Street in Ellicott City. We have two daughters and twelve years ago, I had cancer. My part-time employer, who provided insurance, changed hourly requirements to keep insurance just before my diagnosis, so we were on COBRA during my treatment. We had to keep the plan we had, which got more and more expensive. After 5 years, we could switch plans without preexisting limitations. We had to go with the lowest-cost plan we could get which had a very high deductible. My wife was diagnosed with breast cancer not long after that. She went through surgery in July, started chemo in September, which finished in January. Radiation started after that and finished in April. We had 2 calendar years of deductibles to pay since treatment covered 2 years. That was about $20,000 in medical bills. Once we were able to sign up for an ACA plan, we were able to get a plan with hardly any deductible and we paid far less per month. Cancer requires years of follow-up care. Had Obamacare not been there for us, we would have lost our business. My wife’s MRIs, blood tests and prescriptions are now very affordable for us. Our children still have their parents. We kept our store, which has been in Ellicott City for 28 years. We will be reopening in a few weeks after the flood closed us in July. We are thankful every single day for the ACA. Thank you for fighting for our health care!” – Steven M. from Columbia, MD
• “Our family of four participates in the Maryland healthcare exchange. Both my husband and I are self-employed. I am a nurse working in international development as a contractor. He has a small business selling gardening and landscaping supplies. We depend on our subsidy to afford the coverage. If we did not receive the subsidy, we would have to drop our insurance and make hard choices about when to seek care for ourselves and our children. We do not qualify for Medicaid, but do qualify for a subsidy. Our income is approximately $60,000 per year. Without the subsidy the premium for a silver plan is $1000 per month -$12,000 per year. That is 20% of our income!!” – Suzanne B. from Baltimore, MD
• “My children are 21, 19 and 17. Having insurance that covers my children until they are 26 is one of the best things that happened. One of my daughters has asthma and is in need of frequent care for her condition. If we are not allowed to keep this benefit it will be very detrimental to our family because my children are in college and don't have jobs that offer benefits.”— Lenora T. from Baltimore, MD
• “Before the Affordable Care Act my daughter was without any health insurance. She had turned 18 in 2007 and was dropped off my health plan. She was a full-time student and worked part-time doing retail, but she was tempted to go to school part-time and work full-time so she can get health care through her job. When the Affordable Care Act came 2009, I was able to add her back on to my health plan and she was able to finish college as a full-time student.” – Lisa C. from Parkville, MD
• “I am grateful for the provisions of ACA that require insurance companies to cover those of us with pre-existing conditions. Though my asthma is under control, has never required me to be hospitalized and has only needed outpatient nebulizer treatment twice in the 25 years since it was diagnosed, before ACA, I was denied coverage due to it.” – Nancy S. from Catonsville, MD