Rep. Andy Harris (see http://harris.house.gov/) loves to state a position (usually involving the word “NO”, and then stick to it, no matter what the ramifications. As a Tea Party and wealthy corporatist Favorite Son, he merely does what he is told by the puppet masters who control his campaign contribution purse-strings. The health care issue is no different for him today, than it was three years ago, when he promised to repeal the Affordable Care Act (“Obamacare”), come hell or high water.
Even after decrying the required wait for his own health coverage to take effect in Congress, he turned a blind eye to the plight of those who have no health coverage at all…not just for 30 days, but for their entire lives. Back then, he was upset because there was a standard waiting period from the time he was sworn in, until the effective date of the Congressional health plan. Meanwhile, this is an ordinary course of events for Americans, on a daily basis. If you move from one company to another, you might have to wait 30, 60 or 90 days before coverage takes effect.
While looking out for his own health coverage, Harris’ ongoing repeal efforts would deny the following benefits to families and businesses in the 1st district:
- Improving coverage for 498,000 residents with health insurance, by ending the worst of insurance company abuses such as eliminating pre-existing condition exclusions and annual and lifetime coverage limits.
- Allowing 50,000 young adults to obtain coverage on their parents’ insurance plans.
- Strengthening Medicare for 119,000 beneficiaries, including reducing the cost of prescription drugs and eliminating waste fraud and abuse.
- Giving tax credits and other help to up to 126,000 families and 17,900 small businesses to help them afford coverage.
- Guaranteeing that 8,500 residents with pre-existing conditions can obtain coverage.
- Extending coverage to 19,000 uninsured residents.
- Protecting 1,100 families from bankruptcy due to unaffordable health care costs.
- Providing millions of dollars in new funding for 47 community health centers.
- Saving hospitals and other health care providers by $29 million annually, by reducing the cost of uncompensated care.
It’s about time Harris stops playing politics with the health and welfare of the residents of the 1st district. It’s time, as a doctor who supposedly subscribes to the Hippocratic Oath and promise to “First, do no harm”, to start acting like it. People’s lives hang in the balance and they should not be considered fodder for his political rallies, soundbites and distorted charts that he is famous for. It’s time to put PEOPLE OVER POLITICS!