While most of today’s focus will be on Senate Republicans — who will and won’t support the health-care bill — it’s worth taking note of what Democrats are doing to oppose the measure.
The minority party has been in an unusual situation over the last several weeks, trying to develop a robust message against the bill without knowing exactly what would be in it. As one lobbyist told our colleagues Wednesday, “It’s like trying to shoot something in the dark.”
So far, Democrats have focused on how the measure could harm different constituencies: rural Americans, Medicaid recipients, people affected by the opioid crisis and cancer survivors, to name a few.
The GOP efforts would “hit rural communities like a wrecking ball,” Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) said Wednesday.
This week, four groups focused on public health dispatched a joint statement faulting the complete lack of detail released by Senate Republicans. Their statement again decried the House’s legislation, especially its elimination of all money for a federal Prevention and Public Health Fund. “The pain will be felt in every state, every congressional district, and every neighborhood,” the statement said.
A coalition of eight health-care and consumer groups under the banner Protect Patients First, including the American Medical Association and AARP, convened a second grass-roots event on Wednesday — this time in Reno, Nev. Speakers included heart-disease and breast-cancer survivors who have benefited from the ACA’s ban on insurers excluding or charging more to customers with preexisting medical problem …
The [American Cancer Society] has just started running print and online ads in several key states and is bringing cancer survivors to Capitol Hill next Tuesday along with groups representing patients with diabetes, multiple sclerosis and cystic fibrosis. The American Heart Association is also flying in some of its members to meet with lawmakers and their staff.