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Senate Republicans Set to Unveil Trumpcare Bill
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Senate Republicans Set to Unveil Trumpcare Bill

With a Quick Vote Planned for Next Week, Bill Will Gut Funding for Medicaid and Planned Parenthood 

Radical Republicans have been trying for decades to destroy Planned Parenthood, the 100-year-old nonprofit that prides itself on providing birth control and other medical care “no matter what.”

Their latest salvo is the Senate version of Trumpcare which would eliminate Medicaid reimbursements for Planned Parenthood for one year. The controversial bill, which has been drafted in private, was released today.

The Senate bill would roll back the Affordable Care Act’s taxes, phase down its Medicaid expansion, rejigger its subsidies, give states wider latitude in opting out of its regulations as well as eliminate federal funding for Planned Parenthood. Here’s a good breakdown of the Senate’s Trumpcare bill and what it does to various parts of Obamacare.

A vote is expected next week.

The way Republican leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) is trying to ram the bill through the Senate, using rules meant for budget bills so it would need only 51 votes, could also doom the bill. That’s because the language that would strip federal funding from Planned Parenthood may not meet the tests senators set up to fast-track budget bills.

“Planned Parenthood is singled out for discrimination in Trumpcare for purely ideological reasons,” said Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) “There’s very good reason to believe that this is contrary to requirements for expedited floor consideration in the Senate.”

Supporters of Planned Parenthood protested nationwide Wednesday in more than 50 “Pink the Night Out” rallies.

Middle school social studies teacher Amy Gollub, 36, was at the rally in Springfield, Mo., with her husband, Travis, and their 3-year-old son. Gollub got birth control and checkups from Planned Parenthood when she was in college and didn’t make enough to pay for health insurance.

ACTION BOX / What you can do about it

Contact Planned Parenthood or donate to the nonprofit that has been helping women and men with birth control and other medical services.

Contact Republican senators about funding being stripped from Planned Parenthood, which would increase unplanned pregnancies and leave some rural, low-income women without family planning services. Here are six Republican senators who are considered possible votes against the Trumpcare bill.

Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W. Va.) Call her at 202-224-6472 or 304-347-5372 or write her at 172 Russell Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20510 or 500 Virginia Street East, Suite 950, Charleston, W.Va. 25301.

Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) Call her at 202-224-2523 or 207-622-8414 or write her at 413 Dirksen Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20510 or 68 Sewall St., Room 507, Augusta, Maine 04330

Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) Call him at 202-224-4521 or at 602-840-1891 or write him at Senate Russell Office Building 413, Washington, D.C. 20510 or 2200 E. Camelback Road, Suite 120, Phoenix, Ariz. 85016.

Sen. Dean Heller (R-Nev.) Call him at 202-224-6244 or 702-388-6605 or write him at 324 Hart Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20510 or 8930 W. Sunset Road, Suite 230, Las Vegas, Nev. 89148.

Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) Call her at 202-224-6665 or 907-271-3735 write her at 522 Hart Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20510 or at 510 L Street, Suite 600, Anchorage, Alaska 99501.

Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) Call him at 202-224-3353 or 614-469-6774 or write him at 448 Russell Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20510 or 37 W. Broad St., Room 300, Columbus, Ohio 43215.

“They provided for me,” Gollub said.

Certified nurse midwife Carla Lantz talked about her patients who include men, professional women, and postmenopausal women.

“Every time we stall another vote that’s a teenager who gets their pack of birth control pills,” Lantz said.

The United States has one of the highest rates of unplanned pregnancies in the developed world, but after former President Barack Obama signed the Affordable Care Act unplanned pregnancies dropped 18%. The abortion rate dropped too, falling for the first time below the numbers for 1973 when abortion became legal nationwide.

The Congressional Budget Office has estimated that defunding Planned Parenthood would lead to thousands of unwanted births and leave 15% of rural, low-income women without any access to family planning services.

Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) plan to introduce an amendment to strip the Planned Parenthood language from the bill.

“I will fight to keep the funding in,” Murkowski said.

Featured photo: Planned Parenthood supporters at a ‘Pink the Night Out’ rally Wednesday in Springfield, Mo. (Photo by Sarah Okeson)

 

June 22, 2017