Congressional Republicans are still working to pass a healthcare bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which will cause millions of people to lose health care and be particularly devastating to women and families. The most recent attempt to pass legislation in the U.S. Senate failed in July after the debate carried on into the early hours of the morning.
The Senate than took votes on three separate proposals: the Senate’s original repeal and replace bill, a partial repeal and delay amendment, and the “Skinny Repeal” bill. The last proposal – the “Skinny Repeal” was suspected to be the most likely to pass, but thanks in large part to the calls of opposition from advocates across the country, Senators Collins, Murkowski, and McCain joined all of the Democratic Senators to vote ‘NO’, killing the proposal with a 51-49 vote.
Now, Senate Republicans are back with a last-ditch effort to repeal the ACA. A “new” bill was introduced last week – known as the Graham-Cassidy bill – and Senate Republican leaders are attempting to pass it before the September 30th procedural deadline when only a simple majority is needed to pass legislation. And while the Graham-Cassidy bill is being framed by supporters as a compromise, however, it would have essentially the same dangerous consequences for women and families as previous ACA repeal bills.
Ohio Senator Brown has consistently voted against previous versions of the ACA repeal bills and spoken out against the Cassidy-Graham bill, as well as efforts to dismantle the Affordable Care Act as a whole. However, Ohio Senator Rob Portman had been quiet throughout much of the process and was not among those that took a stand against previous these harmful proposals. Although he voted ‘NO’ on the repeal and delay proposal, he voted ‘YES’ on the partial replace amendment and the “Skinny Repeal.”
During a conference call with reporters this week, Senator Portman seemed to be leaning toward supporting the Graham-Cassidy bill despite the public opposition from Ohio Governor John Kasich. We must keep pressure on Senator Portman to vote against this bill and any bill that causes Ohioans to lose coverage, cuts the Medicaid program, guts critical protections for Ohioans with pre-existing health conditions, or treats being a woman as a pre-existing condition.
This last-ditch effort to repeal the ACA is being sold as a compromise by the bill’s sponsors. In reality, it is more of the same harmful tactics used in previous failed attempts to repeal the ACA and would result in many of the same dangerous consequences, if not worse. And, as with previous bills, it will be particularly harmful to women. The bill would:
Below are materials to help you raise your voice to push back on Senate’s Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA) help craft messaging to your audience and use as during call-ins to Senator Portman’s office. We will continue to update with partner resources as they are created. Contact Erin Ryan at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like new resources added to the toolkit.
The #GrahamCassidy bill is an attack on women’s health & economic security. Contact @senrobportman now & urge him to vote NO #ProtectOurCare
Senate expected to vote on the #GrahamCassidybill before knowing how it will impact coverage & premiums. Take action http://bit.ly/2jIk2Cl
The #GrahamCassidybill puts #healthcare coverage on the line for millions. Raise your voice to protect access http://bit.ly/2tXBe70
Use @OhioWPPN Toolkit to raise your voice against #GrahamCassidy bill & help protect #healthcare access for millions http://bit.ly/2tXBe70
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Events are being organized around Ohio to show support for preserving health care coverage and to urge Senator Portman to vote no on the Graham-Cassidy Bill. We will update this list as events are created. Contact Erin Ryan at email@example.com if you would like new events added to the toolkit.
Friday, September 22
Resist Graham-Cassidy, Defend the ACA Rally
Time: 4:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Location: Senator Rob Portman’s Cleveland Office, 1240 E 9th St # 3061, Cleveland, Ohio 44199
Hosted by: OFA- Ohio, Planned Parenthood Advocates of Ohio
Rally to save healthcare
Time: 10:00 AM
Location: Senator Rob Portman’s Cleveland Office, 1240 E. 9th Street, Cleveland, OH 44199
Tuesday, September 26
Rally Against Graham-Cassidy Bill
Time: 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
Location: Senator Rob Portman’s Columbus Office, 37 W Broad St Ste 300, Columbus, Ohio 43215
Hosted by: Indivisible: Ohio District 12, Indivisible Columbus District 3, Indivisible Ohio District 15, and Planned Parenthood Advocates of Ohio