Week Ending January 14, 2011
House Leaders Cancel Legislative Work for the Week
Due to the tragic shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ) and others in Tucson last Saturday, the House of Representatives cancelled legislative work for this week. On Wednesday, the House passed a resolution condemning the shooting and honoring the victims of this horrific event.
After Postponement, House will Debate Bill to Repeal Health Care Reform
Originally scheduled for this week, House Republican leaders announced that the House will consider legislation repealing the new health care reform law next week. A vote is expected late Wednesday.
If the law is repealed, insurance companies would once again be able to deny coverage to those with pre-existing conditions, terminate coverage for those who get sick and charge women twice as much for the same coverage as men. Seniors would lose new guarantees including free preventive care and lower cost prescription drugs. Parents would lose the ability to keep their adult children on their health care plans. Small business owners would lose tax credits that will help them provide coverage for their employees. In the future, workers would lose the freedom to change jobs without worrying about losing health care coverage. Moreover, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimates that repealing the Affordable Care Act would add $230 billion to the deficit over ten years.
Rather than taking new steps to boost our still-fragile economy, Republican House leaders are focused on taking insurance companies off the hook.
Call Your Representative at 202-224-3121
Call your Representative today and urge him/her to vote NO on legislation to repeal the Affordable Care Act. Tell your Representative to get to work on the economy instead of unraveling the law that will keep insurance companies in check.
GOP Lawmakers Drafting Legislation to Allow States to File for Bankruptcy
House Republicans are planning to introduce legislation allowing states to file for bankruptcy. Currently municipalities have specific authority to file for federal bankruptcy protection under Chapter 9 of the bankruptcy code if authorized to do so by their state, but there is no federal bankruptcy authority for states. New legislation is under consideration according to various media reports as a tool to restructure union contracts and benefits, including pension obligations. A recent article in Pensions & Investments magazine reports that former House Speaker and presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich is a strong advocate of the idea. AFSCME is raising concerns with what the implications of state bankruptcy would have not only for public employees, but for the economies of the states and the nation.
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