Hoping to pressure the Republican Congress into backing down from their goal of repealing the Affordable Care Act once Donald Trump takes office, Democrats stormed the Senate floor and social media on Monday night to outline the damage that would be done if the GOP gets its way.
Live video feed of the Senate floor can be seen here.
Through a series of live streams on Facebook and speeches likely to go well into the night, Democrats are trying to rally supporters and paint Republicans into a corner as they move to take away health insurance from more than 20 million Republicans – likely without any plan to replace the current law.
The way we’re going to win this fight is when millions of people become engaged,” Bernie Sanders said in another video. “We need all of you involved.”
Democratic Sen. Chris Van Hollen of Maryland said the purpose of the all-in effort is “to send a clear message to the country, to the American people that, No. 1, we’re going to do everything we can to prevent Senate Republicans from destroying the Affordable Care Act.”
“We’re focused on making sure that we get on the Senate floor and talk about the damaging consequences and the chaos that’s going to be created throughout the health care system,” he added.
A number of Democratic Senators, including Elizabeth Warren, Tim Kaine, and Cory Booker also participated in the offensive.
The effort on Monday night is just the beginning of the cross-country effort by the Democrats to save Obamacare from Republican efforts to dismantle it.
According to RollCall, there will also be a series of Democratic rallies across the country on Sunday to protests GOP efforts to repeal the law, including an event in Michigan headlined by Democratic Sens. Bernie Sanders, Chuck Schumer, Debbie Stabenow, and Gary Peters.
“If Mr. Trump allows the Republican Party to go ahead with its plans, it will dismantle the health care system and jeopardize the economic security of millions of Americans,” Sanders said, according to RollCall. “Our message to the Republicans is simple and straightforward. You are not going to get away with it. You are not going to punish the elderly, disabled veterans, the children, the sick and the poor while you reward your billionaire friends.”
It’s not clear if the Democrats will be successful in protecting President Obama’s signature achievement from repeal, but they aren’t letting the law fall without a fight – and they’re making sure Republicans own the damage and chaos that would ensue if it’s repealed.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.
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