President Trump calls Kevin Cramer’s ‘health care’ bill “Mean”

(BISMARCK, ND) – This week, in a meeting with Republican Senators, President Trump changed his tone regarding the ‘health care’ bill Congressman Cramer helped author, calling it “mean.”

In response, Democratic-NPL executive director Robert Haider issued the following statement:

“We happen to agree with the president. The so-called ‘health care’ bill Kevin Cramer helped author would be devastating for tens of thousands of North Dakotans. It would increase premiums next year by approximately $800 for the average 40-year-old North Dakotan. It would strip away protections for patients with pre-existing conditions. It would slash hundreds of billions of dollars from Medicaid and end Medicaid expansion. These aren’t just our opinions – it’s what every nonpartisan analysis of the legislation shows. Given these devastating effects, it’s no surprise that every major organization representing doctors, medical professionals and patients opposes Cramer’s bill. When it comes to protecting our health care, Kevin Cramer simply refuses to do what’s right for North Dakotans.”

Democratic-NPL leaders in North Dakota have previously used language similar to the president’s to describe the Republican ‘health care’ bill. In a statement issued last month following the CBO’s report that the Republican bill would force 23 million Americans to lose coverage while providing tax cuts for high-income earners, Senator Heidi Heitkamp called the legislation “downright mean.”

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Background:

GOP ‘health care’ bill would increase premiums by around $800 next year for North Dakotans: In its recent report, the CBO found that health insurance premiums would increase by an average of 20 percent in 2018, after which premiums would become highly volatile from state-to-state as markets become destabilized. In North Dakota in 2018, that would mean average increases in premiums of $794 – $871 for individuals who are roughly 40 years old, according to pricing data from the Kaiser Family Foundation. Higher premiums would also disproportionately fall on working families and those with more severe health problems. In Morton, Burleigh, Oliver, Cass, Traill counties, insurance premiums for an average 40 year-old North Dakotan are estimated to increase by $794 in 2018. In the other 48 North Dakota counties, insurance premiums are estimated to increase by $871 in 2018.

GOP ‘health care’ bill would strip away protections for patients with pre-existing conditions: President Donald Trump made a similar claim to Pittenger’s, saying on April 30 that “pre-existing conditions are in the bill.” Politifact rated that Mostly False. Also Per Politifact: “If the AHCA passes, it would allow for people with pre-existing conditions to be charged more per year for their insurance coverage – possibly to the tune of thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars more per year, some studies have found.”

GOP ‘health care’ bill would slash hundreds of billions from Medicaid and effectively end Medicaid expansion: Many if not most of the 31 states that expanded Medicaid to low-income adults likely would end those coverage expansions if Congress ultimately approves the House Republican healthcare reform bill passed Thursday, state policy experts say. Healthcare leaders and experts in Ohio, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia predicted their states would terminate their expansions if Congress passed the American Health Care Act with its Medicaid provisions intact. They and national policy experts said they see very few states having the financial capacity or political will to maintain the expansions if the bill’s large cut in federal funding is enacted. 

Over 50 organizations representing doctors, medical professionals and patients oppose the GOP health care bill: Over 50 organizations oppose the proposed healthcare plan that will make Americans will pay more for less. The list includes nurses, doctors, hospitals, teachers, churches, and more. You can see a few here: AARP: AARP opposes this legislation, as introduced, that would weaken Medicare, leaving the door open to a voucher program that shifts costs and risks to seniors. American Medical Association: The American Health Care Act (AHCA), released by Congress this week, is intended to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA). But as introduced, it does not align with the health reform objectives that the AMA set forth in January to protect patients. While the ACA is imperfect, the current version of the AHCA is not legislation we can support. […]