(BISMARCK, ND) – Congressman Kevin Cramer calls the Republican health care plan he helped author “a rescue mission.” He’s right, in one sense: Cramer’s bill would rescue wealthy individuals and special interests by giving them huge tax breaks paid for by gutting health coverage for working North Dakotans. 

According to the Fargo Forum, the Republican health care bill that passed the House “would eliminate health coverage for 30,100 North Dakotans, according to an analysis by the Center for American Progress, a nonpartisan nonprofit group.” Additionally, under Cramer’s bill, an average 40-year-old North Dakotan would face increased premiums of about $800 per year, according to the nonpartisan Century Foundation. And, by imposing severe cuts to Medicaid, Cramer’s bill would force hundreds of rural hospitals in North Dakota and across the country to roll back their services or close their doors entirely.

However, the highest-income earners would indeed be “rescued” under Cramer’s bill. According to the Center for American Progress, North Dakota households with annual incomes over $1 million would receive tax cuts averaging $32,271 per year. Nationwide, the most affluent one percent would be “rescued” by nearly $400 million in tax breaks, including a capital-gains tax cut for wealthy individuals that would be retroactive to January of this year.

“Rep. Kevin Cramer’s so-called ‘health care’ bill isn’t about health care at all – it’s about tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires, and handouts for special interests,” said Democratic-NPL executive director Robert Haider. “Cramer’s bill would ‘rescue’ those who are already well-off with more tax breaks, while forcing North Dakotans who are sick, elderly, or living in rural communities to pick up the tab. North Dakotan’s should be asking: Who is Kevin Cramer rescuing, and who is he leaving behind?”