Local Republicans played a big role in today’s passage American Health Care Act in the U.S. House Representatives.
During a victory press conference in the White House Rose Garden, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy of Bakersfield said repealing the Affordable Care Act will be a positive for the American people.
McCarthy: “I did not run to this office to this office to promote a party. I ran to this office to make this country better. It would be easy to say ‘no’. It would be easy to watch it collapse. But I can’t look at this families. I don’t think that’s right.”
All valley House Republicans voted for the bill, including Hanford Representative David Valadao, who just one day ago told Valley Public Radio ago he was on the fence. He represents a district where Democrats hold a registration edge, and which is home to roughly 400,000 Medi-Cal enrollees.
In a written statement today Valadao blamed Obamacare for a lack of medical providers in the valley, and said the new law would help stabilize the health care system and help ensure access to care.
Valadao: “Obamacare is failing. Under the law, our Central Valley communities were prevented from recruiting medical professionals, our emergency rooms were overflowing, and parents were unable to choose the best healthcare options for their children. As a parent, there is absolutely nothing more important to me than ensuring families have access to quality, affordable health insurance. Possession of an insurance card does not equate to healthcare services and medical treatment. The American Health Care Act will stabilize our healthcare system, ensuring our community has access to high quality, affordable health care."
Tulare’s Devin Nunes was also a ‘yes’ vote.
The valley’s lone congressional Democrat, Fresno’s Jim Costa voted against the act.
He a released a statement saying if the AHCA becomes law saying millions of Americans including in the San Joaquin Valley will see their health care cost rise or will lose their coverage.
Costa: “Congressional Republican leaders and the Trump Administration have spent several weeks negotiating, and the end result of those negotiations made a disastrous health care bill even worse. “The American people have demanded solutions that improve their health care outcomes from Congress, and this legislation fails to meet that test. If the American Health Care Act is enacted into law, then millions of Americans, including many of our friends and neighbors in the San Joaquin Valley, will either see their health care costs rise substantially or they will completely lose their coverage. Unconscionably, this legislation will also reduce the health care options available to our nation’s veterans, betraying our nation’s heroes after they have served our country.”
The bill now moves to the Senate where both California Senators have staked out positions against it.