UPDATING: The Freedom Caucus jumped on board with the MacArthur Amendment today, giving it a broader appeal among the GOP majority. That ramps this up. Bigly.
The Republicans are gearing up for their next assault on the Affordable Care Act, and they’re counting on the Resistance sitting back on its success stamping it out last time. And we can’t let up.
NJ03’s Rep Tom MacArthur is the key player in the Republican’s next iteration of ‘Repeal & Replace’ via the MacArthur Amendment. Through the House GOP’s Tuesday Group, the ‘moderate’ wing which he co-chairs, his proposal is merely an amendment to TrumpRyanCare (the bill we helped defeated in March – with all of our Republicans against it except MacArthur.) Horse-trading today is an effort to get members of the farther-right Freedom Caucus on board.
Speaker Paul Ryan was hard at work selling the MacArthur Amendment this morning, touting T-Mac’s insurance industry background – as though that’s a good thing. We don’t need somebody else looking out to make sure the insurance industry can keep profiting. They’ll be fine. Ryan touted 3 benefits to the MacArthur Amendment:
- lower premiums
- gives states more flexibility
- protects people with pre-existing conditions.
That’s tricky language – the “giving states more flexibility” part is actually about allowing states to waive protections for people with pre-existing conditions.
In fact, New Jersey Policy Perspective (NJPP) says this is nothing more than a resurrection the bill we already defeated with the new amendment retaining all the worst elements of the original plan and sharply reducing protections for pre-existing conditions and other health benefits (read more here and NJ-specific info here).
Congressmen Lance (NJ07) and LoBiondo (NJ02) both said yesterday they do not support MacArthur’s compromise amendment. Lance says he’s still not comfortable with the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) score he’s seen thus far. LoBo (who has been invited to another town hall he probably will not attend) says by tweet he hasn’t seen the draft text and he doesn’t think his concerns for South Jersey are addressed. MacArthur may get the biggest protest today, but it’s on outside all the GOP congressional offices. Rally info for today:
Morristown – Frelinghuysen (map & address)
Westfield – Lance (map & address)
Flemington ** – Lance (map & address)
Mays Landing – LoBiondo (map & address) No early delegation here, meet at 4:30pm
Marlton – MacArthur (map & address)
Toms River – MacArthur (map & address)
Freehold – Smith (map & address)
** For Flemington vigil, park at Stop & Shop on Rt. 31 (334 Route 31), a shuttle van will transport people to the Flemington rally.
For those protesting outside Leonard Lance’s office in Flemington, you’d be welcome at Progressive Hunterdon Democrats’ Gubernatorial Forum tonight – 6:30-8:30 (immediately after Lance’s office) at Stangl Stage (2 Stangl Road, next to Factory Fuel Coffee) in Flemington.
Also – check out how Flemington’s NJCA rally leader Jessica Hand has brought the fight for public health to Washington D.C. at Hometown Rising Town Hall with Rep. Keith Ellison. Well-done Jessica!