Following the reveal of the Senate Republicans’ new health care bill, former President Barack Obama has responded to the bill’s features, which would lead to the cutting of many benefits of the Affordable Care Act, according to The New York Times. Features such as Medicaid and maternity care are in danger of significant cuts under the bill.
Posting on his Facebook page, Obama wrote, “Our politics are divided. They have been for a long time. And while I know that division makes it difficult to listen to Americans with whom we disagree, that’s what we need to do today.”
Also in the message, Obama called upon senators to observe the new draft of the bill with a seriousness that goes beyond instilling Republican values. “I hope that our Senators, many of whom I know well, step back and measure what’s really at stake,” he said, “and consider that the rationale for action, on health care or any other issue, must be something more than simply undoing something that Democrats did.”
Although Obama pointed out that, with the Affordable Care Act in place, more than 90 percent of Americans “know the security of health insurance,” he also recognized that the system has its flaws. “It was not perfect, nor could it be the end of our efforts—and that if Republicans could put together a plan that is demonstrably better than the improvements we made to our health care system, that covers as many people at less cost, I would gladly and publicly support it.”
The lengthy response even included a subtle remark about President Trump’s unorthodox administration. “I still hope that there are enough Republicans in Congress who remember that public service is not about sport or notching a political win,” Obama wrote, “that there’s a reason we all chose to serve in the first place, and that hopefully, it’s to make people’s lives better, not worse.”
Obama closed his message reminding Americans that making a difference amidst this change is possible “if you’re willing to call your members of Congress…if you’re willing to speak out, let them and the country know, in very real terms, what this means for you and your family.”
After the release of the bill’s draft, President Trump expressed support for it via Twitter:
I am very supportive of the Senate #HealthcareBill. Look forward to making it really special! Remember, ObamaCare is dead.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 22, 2017
Regardless of politicial beliefs, everyone should keep in mind the words Obama tweeted with a link to his message:
Health care has always been about something bigger than politics: it's about the character of our country. https://t.co/UqLO14Hef7
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) June 22, 2017