Social Justice

“What I’m Watching Here Is a Tragedy”: Catherine Cortez Masto Condemns Trumpcare Alongside Nevada Health Care Advocates

At UMC’s Children’s Hospital of Nevada in Las Vegas, U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D) refused to mince words in describing Senate Republicans’ stalled Trumpcare bill. Cortez Masto stated she could not find anything in the Senate Republican bill that would “lower costs for anyone in Nevada”.

Cortez Masto joined local health care advocates on Friday to point out how Trumpcare does nothing but harm Nevada.

Photo by Andrew Davey
“What I’m watching here is a tragedy. […] There is not a single provision in this bill that will result in ‘better care’ or lower costs for anyone in Nevada.”
– Senator Catherine Cortez Masto

Despite its title, the experts see nothing better in the Better Care Reconciliation Act. Rather, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities has detailed how the Senate Trumpcare bill would cause a 35% cut in federal funds for Medicaid by 2036. The Center has also dug into how Trumpcare’s Medicaid cuts would obliterate health care services in rural communities.

Photo by Andrew Davey

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities teamed up with the Nevada Institute for Children’s Research and Policy, Children’s Advocacy Alliance, and the Nevadans Together for Medicaid Coalition to highlight how Trumpcare would affect health care in Nevada. Children’s Advocacy Alliance Executive Director Denise Tanata explained the real world impact of these health care cuts. “[Families] should not have to choose between paying rent or buying prescription drugs their children need.”

“Families should not have to decide whether to put food on the table or take their sick child to the doctor.”
– Denise Tanata, Children’s Advocacy Alliance

Senator Catherine Cortez Masto talks health care (and the current Trumpcare bill) at UMC Hospital in Las Vegas

Posted by Nevada Forward on Friday, July 7, 2017


Senator Catherine Cortez Masto and health care advocates answer questions on Trumpcare

Posted by Nevada Forward on Friday, July 7, 2017


Senator Cortez Masto contrasted how Nevada’s benefited under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to what’s in the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA, or the Senate Trumpcare bill). “[Trumpcare] does nothing to help women, seniors and children, and threatens to end Medicaid, a program that has helped low-income Americans gain access to quality, affordable care. Instead, this bill aims to cut taxes for the richest Americans, while cutting funding for the poor.”

Cortez Masto also explained what she wants Congress to pass instead of Trumpcare. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) has suggested he might drop Trumpcare and pursue a bipartisan ACA fix if he still can’t find enough Republican votes to pass BCRA. If he follows through on this threat, Cortez Masto wants her colleagues to instead consider fixes like her Marketplace Certainty Act to ensure rural communities have access to health insurance. Cortez Masto also discussed expanding rural access to broadband, which could result in expanding remote telemedicine opportunities in rural communities.

Cortez Masto also endorsed a public option to ensure all markets have affordable health insurance choices. While she still declined to demand a full conversion to single-payer health care, Cortez Masto joins the ranks of Democratic Members of Congress proposing a Medicaid or Medicare like publicly run insurance program to be offered to consumers.

Watch Senator Cortez Masto answer questions from local media on Trumpcare.

Senator Catherine Cortez Masto takes questions from the media on Trumpcare and health care in Nevada

Posted by Nevada Forward on Friday, July 7, 2017


After Cortez Masto’s press gaggle, we spoke with local healthcare activist Jenny Stiles. She has struggled with birth defects, and is now awaiting transplants of two organs. Stiles explained how Medicaid has literally provided a lifeline for herself and her family.

Photo by Andrew Davey
Watch Jenny Stiles share her own health care story and explain why she opposes Trumpcare.

Jenny Stiles shares her health care story, and why she opposes the Senate Trumpcare bill.

Posted by Nevada Forward on Friday, July 7, 2017

Like other constituents, Stiles has had a difficult time getting a hold of Nevada’s other U.S. Senator, Dean Heller (R). While she and Cortez Masto expressed appreciation for Heller opposing the current Trumpcare bill, they’re still not convinced the Senate Republicans’ bill is dead just yet. Senate conservatives are still trying to make tweaks in a last-ditch effort to make Trumpcare more conservative and less unpopular.
Cortez Masto told reporters Friday she expects some sort of Senate health care vote within the next three weeks. The U.S. Senate will join the House in adjourning for August recess on Monday, July 31.

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