Ellison on Affordable Care Act: Our Fight Is Not Over

Friday, March 23, 2012

A message from Keith on today's Affordable Care Act anniversary:


Two years ago you helped pass the most comprehensive health care reform in our nation’s history. The fight was not easy, but thanks to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), 34 million more Americans will gain coverage.

 

Before the ACA, insurance premiums were skyrocketing and creating unnecessary financial burdens on working families. In fact, 60 percent of all bankruptcies were caused by medical debt. Now, thanks to the steps we took to ensure affordable care for all, families won’t go broke if they get sick.

I’m proud to have supported this historic legislation, but we can still do much more to strengthen our nation’s health care system.

For starters, we need a public health care option. I fought hard for the public option during the health reform debates, and I don’t plan on stopping anytime soon. By giving consumers more choices, we can increase competition and keep the cost of coverage even lower. We should also allow Medicare to negotiate drug prices so seniors’ prescription costs are further reduced.

While we could do so much more in the next few years to improve health care in America, the GOP could erase all the progress we’ve made with a single pen stroke if they take control of Congress and the White House in 2012. With the 2010 Republican wave still fresh in our minds, I think we can all agree that we need all hands on deck to stop them.

How would Fifth District residents be affected if the GOP had their way? Here are a few dangerous consequences:

  • As many as 31,000 children with pre-existing conditions like asthma or diabetes would lose their coverage
  • 620 small businesses would no longer receive tax credits to cover their employees
  • 40,000 seniors would be forced to pay out-of-pocket costs for preventative care

With your support, we can protect the progress we’ve made and strengthen Americans’ coverage. Will you stand with me in support of a public option? There’s too much at stake to turn back the clock and put insurance companies back in charge.

Special interests were spending $1 million dollars every day on lobbying to kill reform before it was signed into law. Just imagine how much they’ll spend with the help of far-right Super PAC’s to elect candidates who pledge to repeal the ACA.

That’s what we’re up against.

We need to talk to voters around the country about the battle ahead. If you want to stop the special interests from retaking control of your health care, please join me.

-Keith

P.S. One of the reasons I ran for Congress is because thousands of Minnesotans with skyrocketing health care costs needed relief. I believe that everybody counts and everybody matters—regardless of your ability to afford health care. If you agree, add your name to the list of Americans who want to strengthen health care access.

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