Former President Barack Obama on Thursday denounced the Senate proposal to repeal and replace parts of the Affordable Care Act on Thursday, calling the Republican bill a massive transfer of wealth to the richest people in America with a “fundamental meanness” at its core.
Obama, who has largely stayed out of the political fray and refrained from publicly criticizing President Donald Trump since leaving office, defended his signature legislative achievement in a lengthy Facebook post on Thursday, hours after Senate leaders unveiled the bill. And he accused Republicans of promoting legislation that will harm Americans.
Senators have been having meetings regarding the legislation for weeks now, however its specifics have been tightly held and Senate leaders intend to vote this upcoming week. Due to the fact they are advancing the legislation via reconciliation, they can let themselves lose no more than two votes in the Senate in order to get a majority, presuming a tie-breaking vote by Vice President Mike Pence.
Obama bashed the “rushed” situation that Republicans caused in order to better their legislation and stated that it would undo the protections that his bill, officially labeled the Affordable Care Act, constructed. “I recognize that repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act has become a core tenet of the Republican Party,” he stated. “Still, I hope that our senators, many of whom I know well, step back and measure what’s really at stake, and consider that the rationale for action, on healthcare or any other issue, must be something more than simply undoing something that Democrats did.”
Obama mentioned that alterations would be made to the legislation but that he trusted they would be exactly hurtful as invoking an adjective President Trump said, labeling the House healthcare legislation “mean.”
“Simply put, if there’s a chance you might get sick, get old, or start a family — this bill will do you harm,” he stated. “And small tweaks over the course of the next couple weeks, under the guise of making these bills easier to stomach, cannot change the fundamental meanness at the core of this legislation.”
Prior to departing from office, Obama insisted that Democrats colleagues should fight to guard the Affordable Care Act. After Trump claimed office, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer indicated suspicions that Republicans would do a good job at making alterations to Obamacare, labeling them the “dog who caught the bus” and stating that they “don’t know what to do.”
Obama insisted that Senators should think long and hard about being on the side of the bill and how it would impact people with opioid addictions, pregnant women, children with disabilities, older people and low-income folks.
He stimulated both parties to find a reasonable middle grounds on healthcare and for citizens to call their representatives. “I believe it would demonstrate the kind of leadership that appeals to Americans across party lines,” he stated.