Obamacare Repeal Hearing Bombarded by Protestors
Last Friday republicans tried to pass their Obamacare repeal, that if passed before Sept. 30 only needs 50 votes opposed to the usual 60. On Friday this topic appeared dead in the water as the republican Sen. John McCain said he would not vote for the bill “in good concious”.
With McCain opposing the bill, republicans are seen in a tough spot as the entire Democratic Party opposes this bill and there are about 3 other republicans against the bill. So on late Sunday the republicans unveiled a new version of the bill to try to change some of the republicans back to their side.
The new version of the bill is quite similar to the original bill, in which many are left without insurance, reduced government funding and decimated existing federal health programs.
This new bill has left any people raging especially people with life threatening problems. For example some people with pre existing conditions that depend on Obamacare to live will now be screwed.
Stephanie Woodward one of the many of the people who came, with ADAPT an advocacy group for disabled people, said this bills passage “would mean people with disabilities who need Medicaid in order to live would have their lives put at risk and their liberty.”. Another man who traveled to protest said this bill would mean “death” for many including himself. Many people depend on this bill to be able to survive, they are barely able to buy anything with the bill so imagine with out it.
Due to the level of this Obamacare repeal it was decided that one of the hearings would be held publicly. This public hearing was held on Monday. Where hundreds of activist had gathered at Capitol Hill to protest the bill, where many had said they were ready to be arrested. There were so many demonstrators ready to protest that they filled up two hallways.
Many of the protestors had been there since 5 a.m Monday morning, and to think how early some of the disabled people had woken up, some as early as 2 a.m. The stressful problem being that not everyone was able to get into the hearing room. As it was put into recess so Police could remove the protestors as they did not lose any time and began shout “NO CUTS TO MEDICAID, SAVE OUR LIBERTY!” as soon as the Senate Finance Committee Chairman, Orrin Hatch, tried to begin the hearing.
It took Capitol police about 20 minutes to escort all the disruptive protestors out of the room. Some decided to follow police orders and others would not and this is where it became chaotic. As one man would not listen to the police orders to leave and locked his wheel chair in place. After many warnings and orders given police were left with no other option than to pull the man out of his wheel chair and with the help of about half a dozen officers was carried out.
In a police report it said 181 people were arrested on Monday morning as the protest escalated. U.S Capitol police later stated that the people arrested “failed to cease and desist their unlawful demonstration activities” in the hearing room, which disrupted the hearing.
In the eye of the protestors they probably see their protest as a success, as even once the officers removed the protestors inside the hearing room the ones outside kept shouting. Due to their shouting once Hatch came back out, Hatch decided to discontinue the public hearing and added “if the hearing is going to devolve into a sideshow, there’s absolutely no reason for us to be here.” Which is perfect for the people opposing this repeal because as said before if it’s not passed by Sept. 30, more votes would be needed and all the democrats have said they oppose the bill. Meaning the Obamacare repeal would not have enough votes to be passed.
The irony in this hearing on Monday was that it was on the 18 year anniversary of Olmstead vs. LC — a 1999 Supreme Court ruling that stated that states must provide funding for the disabled to be able to live at home instead of being at an intitution. Now 18 years after they are still fighting for their freedom form incarceration.