Below is a statement by Executive Director Kevin Prindiville on the Obamacare Repeal Reconciliation Act of 2017 (ORRA)
Today the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) confirmed what we already knew: repealing the Affordable Care Act and delaying replacement will wreak havoc on our health care system. According to the CBO’s report, the Senate’s latest bill would strip coverage from 32 million Americans and cause health insurance premiums to nearly double in the next decade.
The Obamacare Repeal Reconciliation Act of 2017 (ORRA), which mirrors a 2015 repeal bill passed by Congress and vetoed by President Obama, calls for an end to Medicaid expansion, premium tax credits, and cost sharing reductions on which older adults rely while simultaneously cutting taxes on the wealthy and corporations. This partial repeal of key ACA provisions would create immediate chaos in the health insurance market and the number of uninsured Americans would increase by 17 million next year.
In addition to yanking Medicaid from 19 million people by ending Medicaid expansion, a repeal threatens other vital parts of the Medicaid program. It ends the Community First Choice program that helps seniors and people with disabilities live at home and in their communities instead of more expensive institutions.
The rapid, nontransparent process the Senate is pushing to jeopardize the health care and well-being of older Americans must stop. It is high time our lawmakers start over and work in a bipartisan manner to improve the Affordable Care Act.
Justice in Aging is a national non-profit legal advocacy organization that fights senior poverty through law. Formerly the National Senior Citizens Law Center, since 1972 we’ve worked for access to affordable health care and economic security for older adults with limited resources, focusing especially on populations that have traditionally lacked legal protection such as women, people of color, LGBT individuals, and people with limited English proficiency. Through targeted advocacy, litigation, and the trainings and resources we provide to local advocates, we ensure access to the social safety net programs that poor seniors depend on, including Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, and Supplemental Security Income (SSI).
Contact: Vanessa Barrington