GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA) – Tensions were high in Greenville, Tuesday, as people protested healthcare reform. This comes on the heels of the House vote to repeal and replace Obamacare.
Those protests happened in front of Senator Graham’s office, making sure that he, Senator Scott and Congressman Gowdy knew they aren’t happy with the potential replacement.
“People will die and there will be blood on their hands,” said protestor, Paulette McGee.
That’s if the GOP lead “American Health Care Act” is allowed to become law, said McGee. She specifically takes issue with the house bill’s extensive list of pre-existing conditions, including allergies and a C-section.
“If you allow the states to say who and what is covered under pre-existing condition, then we are no longer the United States of America. We are 50 little individual kingdoms who gets to decide who lives and who dies,” she said.
So, what does this potential new plan look like for you versus the Affordable Care Act?
“If your goal is to reduce costs, this is an interesting bill that could lead to something you will like after revision in the Senate,” said Neil Caesar, President of the Health Law Center in Greenville. “If your goal is affordable coverage for everybody, then you will have a lot of problems with the bill.”
Caesar said the AHCA is cost effective and makes room for tax free incentives for health savings.
“If your goal is to spend as little as possible on healthcare and you’re pretty healthy then you will like this legislation probably more than you did the other,” said Caesar.
He said if left alone, the pre-existing condition provision will likely jack up costs for those now considered unhealthy, if you can get coverage at all.
“Certainly, this is going to be significantly changed in the Senate. We don’t know how, we don’t know in what way, we don’t know if for better or for worse,” said Caesar.
The potential passage won’t happen overnight, either, leaving time for more protestors and proponents to make their voices heard.
7 News reached out to the offices of Senators Graham and Scott and Congressman Gowdy, Tuesday.
Senator Graham sent the following:
“I look forward to carefully reviewing the House-passed legislation to repeal and replace Obamacare. My primary duty and job is to ensure this bill – if it were to become law – would be beneficial to the people of South Carolina. Only after a careful review of the legislation, as well as discussions with the interested stakeholders across South Carolina, will I know the answer to that question. I do know the revised bill is an improvement over the first attempt.
“Obamacare is a disaster and every day brings fresh evidence that it is moving toward collapse.
“Just yesterday Iowa announced that the sole statewide health care provider on the Obamacare exchange may be pulling out. In South Carolina, the situation is not much different as we are down to one provider on our Obamacare exchange. And that provider – Blue Cross Blue Shield – has already expressed doubts about whether they can afford to continue to offer their product.
“Today’s House vote – where every Democrat voted in opposition – also shows that Democrats in Congress are committed to protecting Obamacare. They refuse to face up to the fact that Obamacare is on the verge of collapse. Until they accept this reality, I believe they will refuse to work with President Trump and Republicans on health care reform.
“I believe it may take Obamacare’s collapse before the parties are willing to work together in a bipartisan manner. The collapse and replace of Obamacare may prove to be the most effective path forward. Only then – and by working together – can we make improvements in health care for millions of Americans.”
Congressman Gowdy sent the following:
“The Declaration of Independence says this: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness are inextricably linked to health and well being. Access to health care and health insurance — no matter our stage of life — is vital. The Affordable Care Act was designed to create a pathway to insurance for the previously uninsured, yet we still have millions of Americans without health insurance, and premium costs continue to rise under the Affordable Care Act.
It is important we are able to take care of our families, especially those with pre-existing conditions. The American Health Care Act ensures under no circumstance can people be denied coverage because of a pre-existing condition.
Today I voted for the American Health Care Act to support the first step of a three-step process of ensuring every American has access to quality, patient-centered health care. I look forward to continue working with my colleagues in Congress and those in the Administration to provide all Americans with access to high quality health care and health insurance.”
7 News did not hear back from Senator Scott, Tuesday.