Given the choice between protecting people with pre-existing health conditions or siding with Trump, Republicans chose Trump.
Speaker Nancy Pelosi gave House members the chance to publicly condemn Trump's dangerous attacks on health care — and Republicans overwhelmingly chose to side with Trump instead of taking a stand to protect Americans.
Pelosi had the House vote on a resolution, introduced by Rep. Colin Allred (D-TX), that calls Trump's attempts to erase protections for people with pre-existing health conditions "an unacceptable assault on the health care of the American people," and calls on the Department of Justice to "cease any and all efforts to destroy Americans' access to affordable health care."
GOP opponents of the measure were unable to overcome the Democratic majority, which passed the nonbinding resolution by a vote of 240-186. Only eight Republicans voted yes, and only one Democrat voted no.
"Once again, House Republicans have shown that they are full accomplices in President Trump’s campaign to destroy protections for people with pre-existing conditions and take away Americans’ health care," Pelosi said in a statement soon after the vote.
The resolution was introduced after Trump's Department of Justice took the extremist step of supporting a lawsuit that would completely eliminate the Affordable Care Act (ACA), or Obamacare.
This would mean at least 20 million people losing access to health insurance, at least a million people losing their jobs, and all Americans losing access to the ACA's most popular protections — including allowing young adults to remain on their parents' health insurance until age 26, and banning insurers from denying coverage or charging more to people with pre-existing health conditions.
Trump fully embraced this radical position on Obamacare even though some of his own Cabinet members advised against it.
And even Republicans who spent almost a decade trying to destroy the ACA are suddenly skittish about the prospect of their stated goal becoming reality, because their position is so unpopular with most Americans.
In the 2018 midterms, health care was one of the major issues with voters across the country. On the campaign trail, Democrats hammered Republicans for their repeated attempts to sabotage the ACA in 2017, including votes to eliminate protections for people with pre-existing conditions. The Republican plan, which passed the House but failed in the Senate, would have increased health care premiums while kicking millions of people off of health insurance.
Voters overwhelming rejected Republicans' attacks on health care and chose a new Democratic majority to lead the House. Recent polls also show that voters want their representatives to strengthen the current health care system, not get rid of it.
In late March, House Democrats released their plan to improve the ACA with a focus on protecting people with pre-existing conditions, and helping lower health insurance premiums for families.
Meanwhile, Republicans continue to side with Trump — no matter how many people will lose their insurance, go bankrupt, or even die as a result.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.