Congressman Tom MacArthur, R-N.J. is the New Jersey Republican who authored an amendment that helped the GOP-led U.S. House of Representatives pass a bill that would cut taxes for America’s richest people while repealing the Affordable Care Act signed into law by President Barack Obama.
MacArthur can expect to encounter critics every time he meets with voters in town hall forums, because the legislation he wrote will kill about 45,000 Americans each year by denying health insurance coverage to 25 million people.
“Tom MacArthur is a murderer,” said Democratic strategist James J. Devine. “He has blood on his hands that is going to come back to haunt him. His fantastic tax cut will kill thousands of ordinary Americans.”
Devine explains that the MacArthur amendment paved the way for Republicans to abolish taxes on high income families that would have paid for health services to needy people who cannot afford care without help.
“People will die. Hospitals will close. Without a source of funding, such as taxes on people making multi-million dollar incomes, there is going to be a critical gap in costs that will either result in denial of service or financial chaos among providers,” said Devine.
MacArthur’s amendment to the American Health Care Act, or AHCA, which is falsely described as a replacement for the 2010 Affordable Care Act; would allow states to apply for waivers to some requirements in the law.
Trump’s promise to repeal the Affordable Care Act stalled when the GOP’s bill died in March without a vote after different factions of the Republican Party couldn’t agree on the bill.
The AHCA retains some parts of Obamacare, but eliminates the insurance mandate and modifies the size and recipients of subsidies.
By 2026, the AHCA would increase the number of uninsured people by 24 million, according to the Congressional Budget Office’s March analysis.
The amendment would allow states to obtain waivers to some requirements of the Affordable Care Act, including the “essential health benefits” provision that requires maternity care or mental health services. This would allow states to dictate what type of benefits — and drugs — insurers would have to cover.
Prohibitions of benefit limits and caps on out-of-pocket expenditures only apply to essential health services, so states granted a waiver would be able to define those protections.
Making premiums more expensive for consumers who are sicker will make them cheaper for those who are younger and healthier, but the whole point of insurance is to share the risk. Gambling that you won’t get hurt or sick is such a bad idea, Obamacare required Americans to get coverage.
Eliminating that requirement will not stop 20-year-olds from breaking their backs or prevent 60-year-olds from having heart attacks. It just means some people will be unable to pay for care they need to stay alive when they are confronted with an unexpected emergency.
Connect with NJTODAY.NET
Join NJTODAY.NET's free Email List to receive occasional updates delivered right to your email address!