|Washington Watch is a NYSARC, Inc. publication regarding important developments on a federal level, as they happen.
July 17, 2017
The Revised Senate Bill Still Includes Devastating Medicaid Cuts
The Senate released their revised Better Care Reconciliation Act last week, but it still includes devastating Medicaid cuts that would have profoundly negative consequences for the Medicaid program and services for people with developmental disabilities. The per capita caps, meager growth rates, and insufficient “carve out for blind and disabled children” remain the same.
The updated CBO score has not yet been released, but it is expected to be about the same. Therefore, this revised health care bill will likely still result in $772 billion in Medicaid cuts, 15 million people losing Medicaid coverage, and a 35% reduction in Medicaid by 2036.
Senate Majority Leader McConnell delayed the vote, originally slated for this week, because Senator McCain is recovering from surgery and unable to vote. Since two Republican senators — Susan Collins of Maine and Rand Paul of Kentucky — have already said they will vote no on the health care bill, McConnell could not risk going forward without McCain. While New York’s Senators are firm no votes, the Senators from the following states are pivotal: Nevada, West Virginia, Alaska, Louisiana, and Ohio.
Join The Arc’s Emergency Letter Writing Campaign
Even though New York’s Senators are no votes, The Arc is asking every state to have as many people as possible send a brief email about how Medicaid Matters to Me to Nicole Jorwic at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include a photo or video in your email and put your state (ie New York) in the subject line. The Arc will hand deliver all the printed messages to the respective Senators this week. All emails must be received by midnight on Wednesday, July 19 to be hand delivered.
Contact House Republicans This Week
If the bill passes the Senate, it will go back to the House for a vote. If you haven’t already done so, please your House Republican Representative and say:
My name is _____________. I am the parent/relative/friend of a person with developmental disabilities. I am calling to ask you to oppose any legislation that would cut or cap Medicaid. Medicaid funds 90% of essential services for people with developmental disabilities. Medicaid cuts or caps would seriously endanger this population.
Here are the New York Representative phone numbers:
- Chris Collins 202-225-5265
- John Faso 202-225-5614
- Peter T. King 202-225-7896
- Tom Reed 202-225-3161
- Elise Stefanik 202-225-4611
- Claudia Tenney 202-225-3665
- Lee Zeldin 202-225-3826
To find the contact information for your US Representative, type in your zip code here. Ask your friends and relatives to make these calls too!
Posting on Social Media Works
In addition to calling House Republicans, voice your opposition on social media using the following hashtags: #VoteNo, #SaveMedicaid, and #NoCutsNoCaps and tweet these legislators directly by clicking on the following links and pressing the button labeled “Tweet to (name of legislator).” Here is a list of some key NY House Republicans who are at risk of supporting the bill if they do not hear enough from their constituents:
- CollinsNY27 (Chris Collins)
- RepJohnFaso (John Faso)
- RepPeteKing (Peter King)
- RepTomReed (Tom Reed)
- RepStefanik (Elise Stefanik)
- RepTenney (Claudia Tenney)
- RepLeeZeldin (Lee Zeldin)
Thank you for your continued advocacy!
Ben Golden, Associate Executive Director for Governmental Affairs, NYSARC, Inc.