Press Release

AFT Statement on Healthcare Bill

For Release: 

Friday, March 24, 2017


Michael Heenan
202/585-4371; Cell:202/577-3941

WASHINGTON—American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten released the following statement on the retraction of the American Health Care Act:

“We elect people to Congress to solve problems, not to make life worse for Americans. The Trump-Ryan healthcare bill not only failed to deliver on the president’s campaign promises of a healthcare bill that lowers costs and expands coverage for all Americans, but also created a plan under which the only winners were the wealthy, insurance executives and other corporations, who would have received big tax breaks. Everyone else was a loser under this bill—including the 24 million Americans whose coverage would have been ripped away, and those with employer-based healthcare coverage who faced increased taxes. It would have resulted in higher costs, particularly for seniors; less coverage, particularly for women and children; and a shift in costs to states resulting in increased state and community fiscal burdens.

“Once the American people learned what was in this bill, they overwhelmingly rejected it, and we hope that President Trump and Speaker Ryan learned a lesson here. Every major piece of legislation needs adjustment; now is the time to fix and strengthen the Affordable Care Act, not repeal and replace it.”

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The AFT represents 1.6 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.