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Statement on House Passage of GOP Health Plan

In Vote to Repeal Affordable Care Act,
House GOP Threatens Quality of Life of People in Poverty

May 4, 2017                                                        

Michelle Nicolet, (P) 312.368.2675,

People in America have spoken: everyone should have access to healthcare.

But on Thursday, House Republicans passed the American Health Care Act (AHCA)—an agenda that will tear at the foundation of our healthcare system and reverse historic progress in the process. By undoing major provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and slashing Medicaid funding, the AHCA would strip at least 24 million people of health insurance and reduce the quality of care for millions more. This reckless piece of legislation poses one of the most significant threats to the financial and physical well-being of people living in or near poverty in recent years, and the massive suffering it would produce would fall hardest on seniors, sicker consumers, women, and people of color.

Passage of the AHCA comes in the face of widespread opposition from constituents, hospitals, insurers, and service providersopposition that helped sink the wildly unpopular bill in House lawmakers’ first attempt to ram it through the legislative process with little transparency. This amended version, which includes provisions that will dismantle consumer protections and allow insurers to discriminate based on pre-existing conditions, was only rendered passable by making it more punitive to older, sicker, lower-income people.

Following Thursday’s vote, the AHCA goes to the Senate. The Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law urges Senators to oppose this disastrous piece of legislation. If passed and signed into law, it will devastate consumers, hospitals, state budgets, and local economies. It will fundamentally weaken our country’s ladder of upward mobility and serve as a major blow to our nation’s commitment to equal opportunity for all. If lawmakers are dedicated to ensuring access to high-quality, affordable healthcare, they will kill this terrible bill.


The Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law provides national leadership in advancing laws and policies that secure justice to improve the lives and opportunities of people living in poverty. We specialize in practical solutions. We advocate for and serve clients directly, while also building the capacity of the nation’s legal aid providers to advance justice and opportunity for their clients.

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