Over the last year, Congress has taken a number of votes that undermine the health care of Californians, and now the Senate is considering a new proposal that would put limits on those with pre-existing conditions. California made some of the greatest gains under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and had the most to lose under the many proposed repeal bills voted on in 2017.
But what were the real costs of these votes for Californians? Health Access California recently released new data that details the price tag of these votes for constituents in Orange County, with more data in other regions forthcoming. This analysis, based off of new Covered California data, identifies that Californians in Orange County will be paying $457.02 more for health care coverage in 2019 in part due to the 2017 tax bill, supported by Orange County Representative Mimi Walters. The new fact sheets also highlight the potential ramifications of the votes by Representative Walters as well as Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, in support of the American Health Care Act (AHCA) and the House Budget Bill, both which would have repealed the ACA.
As pending and new potential ACA repeal bills loom, these fact sheets lay out what remains at stake for Californians.
Aligned with the Trump Administration, Congressmembers Walters and Rohrabacher, along with twelve other California Congressmembers, supported the American Health Care Act, which slashed health coverage subsides, cut Medicaid by 25%, and would have cut Medicare by $487 billion. This would have stripped health care from 5 million Californians including 75,088 in Rep. Walters’ district and 94,675 in Rep. Rohrabacher’s district. It would have also denied their constituents with pre-existing conditions the ability to access affordable health care. If it wasn’t for a few votes in the Senate, including the late Senator McCain blocking the proposal in the Senate, the health care situation in Orange County would be even worse.
Orange County Californians are paying the price, in higher premiums, for the votes of many of their own Congressmembers. By voting for the tax bill that repealed part of the ACA, fewer Californians will have coverage, meaning the insurance pool will be smaller and sicker, leading to ever-increasing premiums. Through these Representatives’ actions and inaction, Orange County residents will see health prices go up, not down.
Even more disturbing in our analysis is the potential devastating consequences to our health care system if all of what they voted for has actually passed. Many of our Congressmembers need to stop voting to cut, cap, and otherwise undermine the health care of their own constituents, and they need to speak out against pending proposals that would disproportionately harm Californians.
We call on our Representatives to stand with California consumers and against the still-pending proposals that continue to put our patient protections at risk!
FACT SHEET: Votes to Repeal Health Care in CA-45
FACT SHEET: Votes to Repeal Health Care in CA-48
More Congressional district analyses are planned for the coming weeks