WASHINGTON – Warning that congressional Republicans are about to “ram through a budget bill” to “throw our health care system into chaos,” Senate and House leaders called Wednesday for a nationwide “day of action” to mobilize grassroots support for programs that help millions of working families.
Senate and House Democratic Leaders Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) were joined by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), the new leader in charge of outreach for Senate Democrats, in sending a letter to congressional colleagues asking for their help organizing rallies or other events on Jan. 15 at locations around the United States.
They also demanded that President-elect Donald Trump keep his promise to preserve Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security by pledging to veto legislation to cut the programs. “Millions of Americans voted for Donald Trump after he promised not to cut Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. He must be held to his promises and should veto any legislation which cuts these vital and necessary health programs,” the letter said.
Schumer, Pelosi and Sanders said the rallies and other events – “Our First Stand: Save Health Care” – will demonstrate public support for programs that congressional Republicans are likely to put on the chopping block as soon as the new session of Congress convenes. “Beginning in January, it is likely that Republican leaders in Congress will follow through on their threats to ram through a budget bill that will severely undermine the health care needs of the American people,” the letter said.
They wrote that “radical proposals” expected to be included in the Republican budget would:
- Take away health care coverage for more than 30 million Americans by dismantling the health care system.
- End guaranteed Medicare benefits for millions of older Americans by converting Medicare into a voucher program.
- Slash Medicaid and threaten nursing home care for more than 4 million vulnerable seniors.
- Jack up prescription drug prices more than $1,000 a year for more than 5 million seniors and people with disabilities.
- Slap a $4,800 tax hike on millions of average Americans, while providing hundreds of billions in tax breaks to the wealthiest people in this country.
To read the letter, click here.