Protect Our Care’s “Care Force One” Bus Tour Is Traveling the Country, Calling Out Dangerous GOP Health Repeal-and-Sabotage Agenda


Watch the kick-off video here.


More photos from today’s event in Bridgeport, CT can be found here.

BRIDGEPORT, CONNECTICUT – This afternoon, Protect Our Care’s nationwide bus tour kicked off  in Connecticut, where nearly 100 community members gathered to call attention to Republicans’ ongoing war on health care care. Headlined by Senator Chris Murphy, Senator Richard Blumenthal and Ned Lamont, the event highlighted the actions Republicans are taking to harm health care in Congress, in the courts, and in far too many states.

At this afternoon’s event, Bridgeport residents, health care advocates, elected officials, and members of Protect Our Care detailed the numbers ways in which Republicans have attacked health care, and how these actions have cut coverage and increased costs. For example, out of pocket costs for older people could have increased by as much as $14,606 by 2026 if the House-passed American Health Care Act had become law and 114,000 people in Connecticut who have obtained health insurance through the ACA marketplace could lose their coverage if a judge sides with President Trump and the GOP in their lawsuit, with protections for 1.5 million Nutmeggers living with a pre-existing condition in jeopardy.

“Affordable healthcare is not a luxury – it is a human right that everyone in America needs and deserves,” said Senator Blumenthal. “Unfortunately, the Trump Administration has been using every tool to sabotage the healthcare system and jeopardize affordable coverage for millions of Americans. We must fight back to not only protect and preserve our care – but to make it better.”

“Connecticut made the decision to try to make the Affordable Care Act work, not undermine it like many other states did,” said Senator Murphy. “Think about the 20 million Americans who have been given access to health care, whose lives have been changed. Just imagine what that number would be if every other state approached the Affordable Care Act the way Connecticut did.”

“I started up a business many years ago and health care was such a key part of what we had to do for all the families working at my company, to provide them security and optimism,” said business owner Ned Lamont. “As I travel the state, more than anything, I hear about health care and that people are afraid it’s not going to be there anymore when they need it.”

The headliners’ concerns were echoed by Nutmeggers with health care stories and concerns over ongoing Republican actions:

“If our government no longer protects coverage for pre-existing conditions, will [my son] have the ability to maintain his certain unalienable rights of life and the pursuit of happiness?” asked Leigh Pechillo, whose son, Robby, was both with hydronephrosis, a rare kidney disease. “We need to protect coverage for pre-existing conditions, we need to protect prohibitions on the discrimination against women and people over age 50, Medicaid, and Medicare so all Americans can have better lives.”

“Without the Affordable Care Act some of my patients would not be alive today,” said Dr. Ross Kristal, Chief Resident of Community Health and Advocacy at Yale. “I could not image practicing medicine without the ACA, and frankly I’m here today because I’m scared that day is coming. I’m worried that the lawsuit brought on by the Republicans will dismantle the ACA, and I’m worried that I won’t be able to provide the care that my patients deserve… We must all act now to protect our care.”

The sentiments of local leaders were echoed by Leslie Dach, chair of Protect Our Care, and cancer survivor Laura Packard, who made clear the purpose of the nationwide tour:

“Since the enactment of the Affordable Care Act, the uninsured rate has been cut in half, and people are healthier and no longer an emergency away from bankruptcy,” said Dach. “The American people want the quality, affordable coverage provided under the law and they want the Republican war on health care to end. That’s why we’re here today.”

“I’m alive because of the Affordable Care Act,” said Packard. “I’m a stage four cancer survivor and I’m on this tour to defend our attacks against the GOP. President Trump may have blocked me on Twitter, but he can’t stop me and the American people from fighting to protect our care.”

Tomorrow, Care Force One will head to Maine, where Protect Our Care will be joined by Senator Angus King and Representative Chellie Pingree in Portland and State Representatives Steve Stanley and Anne Perry and former mayor Joe Baldacci in Bangor.

For more information, please visit protectourcarebustour.com.