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“Cruelty Seems to Be the Point”: Senator Peter Welch, Rep. Jan Schakowsky, Health Care Advocates Blast the GOP’s Ongoing Threats to Medicaid

By April 27, 2023No Comments

Watch the Full Event Here

Washington, DC – Today, Senator Peter Welch (D-VT) and Representative Jan Schakowsky (D-IL-09), joined Caring Across Generations’ Nicole Jorwic and Protect Our Care for a press conference to discuss the Republicans’ ongoing threats and radical plan to cut Medicaid and take health care away from millions. The House Republicans recently passed the Republican plan which imposes cuts in key programs, including slashing health care and other vital discretionary funding and taking Medicaid away from millions by imposing burdensome paperwork requirements in exchange for not defaulting on the nation’s debt. Read more about how Republicans are demanding health care cuts here

A record 92 million Americans are enrolled in Medicaid, which provides affordable care to people from all backgrounds. President Biden and Democrats in Congress are working tirelessly to protect Medicaid from GOP attacks and strengthen the program to ensure everyone has the health care they need. April marks the 5th annual Medicaid Awareness Month.

“Medicaid offers essential health coverage to Vermonters who otherwise couldn’t afford health care,” said Senator Peter Welch (D-VT). “The House GOP’s debt plan to attach work requirements to Medicaid would kick thousands off of their health insurance. It would be absolutely detrimental to those who need access to essential care, including seniors and people living with disabilities. I’m thankful for the advocacy work of Protect our Care and Caring Across Generations, and will continue to stand up and protect Medicaid from these misguided cuts.”

“We’re talking about 92 million Americans right now who are enrolled in Medicaid and this is a lifeline for so many people,” said Representative Jan Schakowsky (D-IL-09). “Cruelty seems to be the point of these work requirements and in what they did yesterday when they decided to hold our economy hostage and cut the most important benefits. We need to protect our care, we need to protect Medicaid. We have to fight back against these terrible cuts. I do believe that when we fight, we win.”

“I’m frankly pretty upset that we have to be here again because one party continues to go to the Medicaid program to get it to pay for things that help the wealthy corporations or gut the ACA while harming people that I love,” said Nicole Jorwic, Chief of Campaigns and Advocacy at Caring Across Generations. “This no good, very bad, ‘Live Grow Save’ bill moves to slash support for Medicaid by over $110 billion dollars by imposing work requirements that are certainly a solution in search of a problem because over 70% of Medicaid beneficiaries are working and the majority of the rest of them are providing care. We shouldn’t have to keep fighting against cuts to these programs at a time when we need to be expanding them.”

“I have been on Medicaid, home and community based services since I was 18,” said Jyll Allen, a patient storyteller from Vermont. “Now Vermont Medicaid and its program called Flexible Choices provide me funding with which to hire my own caregivers. Any cuts to Medicaid really really scare me because the Medicaid home- and community-based waiver has allowed me to be in the community and to access the community as much as I do. I fear that I could lose access to a lot of services that I need and my quality of life would plummet.”

“Republicans should be ashamed that they are more willing to default on the nation’s debt than guarantee affordable health care for families across America,” said Protect Our Care Communications Director Anne Shoup. “Imposing these burdensome paperwork requirements will result in as many as 21 million people losing their health care, throwing patients and hospitals and other providers into chaos as they are forced to pick up the tab. This default bill not only attempts to rip away health care for millions of people who rely on Medicaid, but it also cuts critical health programs by 22 percent. The Republicans have one goal in mind with this legislation: rip away benefits and deny people access to health care.