Last month, Sen. Mitch McConnell introduced the worst bill for women in a generation. Facing lack of support from his own party, the Senate Majority Leader delayed voting on the disastrous Affordable Care Act repeal.
But after weeks of tweaking the legislation behind closed doors, McConnell dropped a revised Trumpcare bill. And what’s even more alarming? Trumpcare 2.0 includes an amendment from Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) that makes Trumpcare scarier.
That’s right: The man who refers to Plan B as “abortion pills” — and once called contraception “government assault on our liberty” — has a plot to make Trumpcare even worse.
Here’s what you need to know about the so-called “Cruz amendment.”
What does the amendment do?
The “Cruz amendment” would allow insurance companies to sell inadequate plans that do not comply with federal standards — so long as they offer at least one plan that does.
This would result in two systems of insurance: one for healthy people and one for those who are sick, have been sick, or have pre-existing conditions (which includes pregnancy).
But as anyone who has auto insurance, homeowners insurance, or health insurance knows, insurance is about sharing risk so that it’s affordable for everyone. By dividing health insurance into two groups, the Cruz proposal undermines the very notion of insurance.
How would it affect me?
For someone who has a pre-existing condition, which is half of the population under the age of 65, the “Cruz amendment” could mean that your health insurance isn’t just expensive, it’s completely out of reach.
For example, under this proposal, any woman who’s had a C-section or been treated for a lump in her breast could be forced to pay outrageous monthly premiums for the health insurance that meets her needs. And those premiums could continually escalate.
It’s the backwards idea Americans have rejected again and again. Americans don’t believe that people with pre-existing conditions should be discriminated against by insurance companies—yet that’s exactly what the “Cruz amendment” does.
It gets worse
Plus, even young, healthy people—including a lot of women of reproductive age—will find themselves paying for insurance plans that do not meet their needs. Because insurers will be permitted to sell skimpy plans, more young people—who tend to have lower incomes—will have to pay out of pocket for an unexpected illness or pregnancy.
Ted Cruz often talks about “choice,” “liberty,” and “freedom.”
But his proposal is just the opposite. And every Senate Republican who pledged to protect people with pre-existing conditions must reject it.