Statement: Senate Health Leader on the Passage of the GOP Health Care Bill

May 4, 2017

SACRAMENTO – Chair of the Senate Health Committee Senator Ed Hernandez (D-West Covina) released the following statement on the passage of the federal legislation known as the American Health Care Act (AHCA) through the House of Representatives today:

“Just when we thought we were safe.

“Minutes ago, Congressional Republicans passed a cobbled together plan to strip coverage from millions of Americans in order to give massive tax cuts to the wealthy few.  

“A little over a month ago, we were breathing a sigh of relief when the initial effort to ‘repeal and replace’ the Affordable Care Act failed to get enough votes. It failed because millions of people across the country, Democrats and Republicans alike, bombarded their representatives with phone calls and flooded town halls, urging Congress to work to make the law better, not take away insurance from the poor and the sick.

“But instead of responding to these concerns, they made it much, much worse. 

“I’m especially disappointed that California’s Republican delegation went along with this heartless bill. Representatives from the Central Valley and the Inland Empire -- regions of California that had among the highest rates of uninsured prior to the ACA, and were among its biggest beneficiaries -- should be ashamed of themselves for this vote. They will have more constituents lose coverage under this bill than almost anyone in the country.

“This vote is a call to arms for all of us. We're going to light up their phones once again and stop this bill in the Senate. But we’re also going to get out the vote next November. Our hard fought gains in health care will only be safe when Congress is back in Democratic hands.”