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Mass. Constituents Urge Scott Brown to Drop Effort to Repeal Affordable Care Act
by Jason Stephany
Email: jason (nospam) massuniting.org
09 Jul 2012
As the US House prepares its vote to repeal the Affordable Care Act, groups representing seniors, young adults and women from across Commonwealth send letter to Brown outlining health care reform benefits -- urging him to stop his effort to roll back the law.
BOSTON – Today, a wide range of Massachusetts organizations representing families, women, seniors, young adults, and small business owners called on U.S. Senator Scott Brown to drop his effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act. Even after the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the law, Brown is supporting his party’s effort to repeal the historic health care reform act. The U.S. House of Representatives has already scheduled a vote to repeal the law for Wednesday, July 11. In a letter to Brown, the groups argued that health care reform has been a benefit to jobs and the economy in Massachusetts, and that the national law includes key protections that benefit millions of residents across the Commonwealth.
View video of constituents’ stories and letter delivery here: http://bit.ly/NgiFxB
“If it weren’t for the Affordable Care Act, I could be walking around with breast cancer today,” said Dory Tobias, a grandmother from Boston’s South End. “I know there are millions of people out there just like me – people who couldn’t afford cancer screenings and other preventive services without this bill. Scott Brown needs to understand how important the Affordable Care Act is to Massachusetts seniors.”
“Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, I’ll be able to stay on my parents’ plan if I need to until I’m 26,” said Rachel Offerdahl of Boston, who is currently on her mother’s plan. “That peace of mind is huge at a time when I’m trying to find a job, pay my bills, and figure out my career. Scott Brown shouldn’t try to take that away.”
“Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts knows firsthand how important this law – and this decision – is for women and families, because we see the need for affordable health care every day,” said Dianne Luby, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts. “More than 45 million women have already received coverage for preventive health screenings, including mammograms and Pap tests, at no cost since August 2010. Scott Brown owes women and their families an honest explanation for why he wants to take these lifesaving benefits away.”
The letter below was signed by the Boston Workers Alliance, the Chelsea Collaborative, Chinese Progressive Political Action, Coalition for Social Justice, Crittenton Women’s Union, Greater Boston Labor Council, Health Care for All, the Massachusetts AFL-CIO, Massachusetts Jobs with Justice, Massachusetts Law Reform Institute, Massachusetts Senior Action Council, MassUniting, Neighbor to Neighbor Massachusetts, Neighbors United for a Better East Boston, Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts, and 1199 SEIU:
====== LETTER BELOW ======
July 8, 2012
U.S. Senator Scott Brown
337 Summer Street
Boston, MA 02210
Dear Senator Brown,
We write today to urge you in the strongest terms to drop your opposition to the Affordable Care Act. With last week’s Supreme Court ruling, the Affordable Care Act has been approved by all three branches of the federal government, and is the settled law of land. If you care about creating jobs and making health care affordable for Americans, you should encourage your colleagues in Congress to abandon their efforts to repeal the law.
When you voted as a state senator to support health care reform in Massachusetts in 2006, it proved to be good for jobs, and good for the economy. Your rationales for opposing the Affordable Care Act are unraveling quickly, in part because of the success that similar reforms are having in Massachusetts – reforms that, to your credit, you originally voted to support. The Affordable Care Act will make health care more affordable for small businesses in Massachusetts and across the country, enabling those companies to hire more workers and invest in their businesses. In terms of job growth and employment, Massachusetts has established a clear track record of consistently outperforming other states that have not made similar reforms. The Affordable Care Act will have a similar positive effect on jobs and the national economy, unless you continue making the partisan choice to hold America back by siding with national Republicans, and refighting the political battles of the past two years.
In addition to the positive impact it will have on job creation, the Affordable Care Act has already begun to deliver new financial security for thousands of Massachusetts families. According to the Department of Health and Human Services, there are over 70,000 Massachusetts seniors who have saved an average of $648 each thanks to the closing of the Medicare donut hole. 2.5 million Massachusetts residents are now free of lifetime limits on their insurance plan, and 1.3 million Massachusetts residents with private insurance now receive all preventive services without any co-pays or other cost-sharing.
No independent minded Senator would support robbing Massachusetts families of these hard-won and much deserved financial benefits. No Senator that truly cares about job creation should be siding with the insurance giants in order to make health care more expensive for American small businesses.
Additionally, 780,000 Medicare recipients have already received free preventive services – such as mammograms, colonoscopies and free wellness visits with their doctor. Approximately 85,000 Massachusetts families will see an average refund of $140, because the Affordable Care Act requires insurance companies to reimburse customers if the insurer spends too much on administrative expenses like executive bonuses, and not enough on patient care. Last, but certainly not least, Massachusetts health centers have received over $107 million in federal funding through the law, improving the quality of medical care for thousands of patients and maintaining real jobs in our state’s largest employment industry – health care.
If you and your colleagues continue to push to repeal the law, all of these jobs and benefits
to Massachusetts families are at risk. Your pledge to repeal the Affordable Care Act is in fact a misguided promise to kill jobs in our state and jeopardize significant health care savings for millions of Massachusetts families.
Each day wasted attempting to repeal health care reform is one more day that you have spent working against job creation – and against the interests of your constituents. We encourage you and your colleagues to stop refighting the political battles of the past two years and to support the Affordable Care Act as the law of the land, and as an engine to bring financial relief to millions of American families and businesses for the sake of job creation and a stronger economy.
Boston Workers Alliance
Chinese Progressive Political Action Coalition for Social Justice
Crittenton Women’s Union
Greater Boston Labor Council
Health Care for All
Massachusetts Jobs with Justice Massachusetts Law Reform Institute
Massachusetts Senior Action Council MassUniting.org
Neighbor to Neighbor Massachusetts Neighbors United for a Better East Boston
Planned Parenthood of Massachusetts
1199 SEIU United Health Care Workers East