For the past few weeks, Republicans in Congress have been working on a plan to cut taxes for wealthy corporations, millionaires, and billionaires by cutting $65 billion in critical support for higher education. Despite gutting support for students and borrowers, Congressional Republicans still have a problem: their math does not add up.
To make the numbers work so that they can pass the tax bill on a party line vote, Congressional Republicans have signaled a last-ditch effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate to pay for trillions of dollars in permanent tax cuts for corporations and the wealthy. A recent study from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) say that this repeal-without-replace scheme would cause premiums to skyrocket and increase the number of uninsured Americans by 13 million over the next decade, including 4 million by 2019. It would also wreak havoc on our health care system and inject further instability to insurance markets.
When Republicans try to eliminate this core element of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), they’re talking about fundamentally dismantling a law that has disproportionately benefitted young people. Young adults make up just 27.6 percent of nonelderly Americans, but this group represents nearly half of those who have gained coverage under the ACA.
In full, 9.3 million young people have gained coverage since passage of the ACA, but the Republican tax plan wants to retreat from this progress to pay for tax cuts that will disproportionately benefit the wealthy. There is a reason why key stakeholders like doctors and hospitals oppose this effort, it’s because it will increase costs for consumers and make it harder to access health care. We can’t let that happen.
At rallies, town halls, and holiday parades, the American people have spoken — we will not stand for taking health care away from our friends and families. Our generation was on the front lines of defeating Trumpcare before, and we’ll do it again.