Press Release

AFT Stands with Congressional Efforts to Protect Americans’ Healthcare

For Release: 

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Contact:

Oriana Korin
202-374-6103
Oriana.Korin@aft.org

WASHINGTON—AFT President Randi Weingarten issued the following statement in response to the introduction of H. Res. 271, a resolution condemning the Trump administration’s campaign to take away Americans’ healthcare.

“President Trump’s first decision after Robert Mueller issued his report was to try to end-run Congress and use the courts to strip healthcare from 133 million people with pre-existing conditions. Why would a president put the lives of the very people who voted for him—the very people he promised to protect—in clear and immediate danger?

“This attempt to strip people of healthcare would be a craven act at any time, but done now, as soon as the president believed he had averted criminal prosecution, smacks of vengeance.

“The facts are grim: Most Americans say they couldn’t afford a health emergency that costs more than $400. While most First-World countries have managed to offer people basic healthcare as a human right, in the U.S.—the wealthiest country in the world—many educators, nurses, public employees and graduate assistants live one illness or one pre-existing condition away from bankruptcy.

“That’s why this move to make healthcare more expensive—or completely inaccessible—is so cruel and callous. This does not reflect our values, it won’t help Americans to have a better life, and it certainly won’t make America great.

“Thankfully, Democrats in Congress are fighting back, first by condemning the president’s assault on the healthcare law, and second by working to strengthen and improve the way people access care for their families. Americans expect their elected officials to help solve these problems, not make them worse. That’s why they elected so many Democrats last November, and that’s what they’re focusing on now as they look ahead to 2020.”

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The AFT represents 1.7 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.