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Rep. Jayapal on the GOP Health Care Bills: “Families lose coverage, billionaires get tax breaks.”

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal, Vice Ranking Member of the House Budget Committee, issued the following statement on the House Republican health care bills released on Monday:

“The Republicans didn’t offer a plan. They put out a dangerous wish list that would raise the cost of health insurance, reduce the quality of care, strip millions of low-income Americans of their coverage, and defund Planned Parenthood, all the while giving billionaires massive tax breaks. Even some Republicans are balking at these bills, resulting in bipartisan opposition to the Trump-Ryan health care proposal.

“I’ve seen this horror movie before. More than 20 years ago, Republicans in Washington state attempted this very strategy, sending our state’s health care system into a downward spiral.

“Now, President Trump and Congressional Republicans are forcing irresponsible bills down the throats of the American people with no debate, no hearings and no estimate for how much it will cost or how many people will lose their coverage. We must protect and expand the Affordable Care Act to ensure that every American has health coverage.”

Due to reconciliation procedures, once the two Republican health care bills are out of the House Energy and Commerce and Ways and Means committees, they will return to the Budget committee to be combined.

Congressional Republicans are attempting to expedite passage of the two bills before the Congressional Budget Office or the American people get a chance to fully assess the damage the they will cause.

According to early reports, the two Republican bills will result in higher costs, low quality care, and less coverage – all the while giving a massive tax break to billionaires.

In its current form, the bills would:

·         Freeze Medicaid expansion and strip working class families and children of their health coverage. More than 11 million Americans would be affected as a result.

·         Completely defund Planned Parenthood and eliminate abortion coverage.

·         Allow insurance companies to charge more or deny coverage to Americans with pre-existing conditions and disabilities if they lapse in coverage for any reason.

·         Force older Americans to pay higher premiums – as much as five times more than what others pay for health care. Seniors would effectively be forced to pay an age tax.