Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) zeroed in on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and became his worst nightmare by explaining how McConnell’s own bill will gut health care in his home state of Kentucky.
In a statement provided to PoliticusUSA, Sen. Sanders said:
Since the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was implemented, no state in the country has benefited more from the ACA than Kentucky. The uninsured rate for adults in Kentucky has gone down from 20.4 percent in 2013 to just 7.8 percent in 2016 – the largest reduction in America. Today, as a result of the ACA, only 4 percent of children in Kentucky are uninsured.
Unbelievably, at a time when Kentucky has made significant progress in health care, the Republican bill being proposed in the Senate by Kentucky’s own Senator Mitch McConnell would throw over 230,000 people in Kentucky off of health insurance. It would also decimate the Medicaid program in the state which provides insurance for more than 2 million people, including 40 percent of all children.
Further, at a time when Kentucky is struggling with an opioid addiction epidemic, there is no question that if McConnell’s legislation were to be passed, thousands of Kentuckians would no longer be able to receive the treatment they desperately need.
The bottom line is that this legislation, which nationally would throw 22 million Americans off of health insurance, cut Medicaid by almost $800 billion, substantially raise premiums for older workers and defund Planned Parenthood, is a disaster for America but an even greater disaster for Kentucky and other states that voted heavily for Trump. This Republican legislation must be defeated.
Mitch McConnell wrote the health care bill in secret and tried to rush it through the Senate before the 4th of July recess because he didn’t want his constituents in Kentucky and Americans all across the country to know what was in the health care bill. McConnell tried to sneak a bill that will take coverage away from 22 million people while making people who still have coverage pay more for less behind the backs of those who are paying his salary.
The worst thing that can happen to Mitch McConnell and Senate Republicans is for Bernie Sanders and the Democrats to roll into their backyards and explain what this bill does.
Mitch McConnell tried to pass a secret health care bill, but now he’s got Bernie Sanders arriving in Kentucky and screaming at the top his lungs about this legislation. When Bernie Sanders arrives in the Bluegrass State on Sunday, he will be McConnell’s worst nightmare.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association