Congresswoman Chellie Pingree said today that repeal of health care reform legislation would have an immediate negative impact on hundreds of thousands of Maine people and small businesses.
"If the health care reform law is repealed, over 250,000 Maine seniors would suddenly have to start coming up with co-pays for diabetes screening and mammograms. Over 35,000 Maine small businesses would no longer be eligible for a tax break when they provide health insurance to their employees and thousands of young adults could lose health care coverage under their parents' plans," Pingree said.
Republicans in Congress have made repealing health care reform their top priority and a vote on repeal is expected in the U.S. House next week. This morning Pingree voted against a procedural measure that allows the repeal proposal to go forward. The procedural measure passed along party lines.
Pingree said she has heard from Maine families who have urged her to fight to protect health care reform.
"I've heard stories from Maine people who are already benefitting from health care reform and don't want to see it repealed," Pingree said. "Pam from York is one example--she and her husband have a 20 year-old son and a 22 year-old daughter who are been covered under their parents' insurance. Both of their children have needed medical care and Pam worries what would happen if the health care law is repealed."
The health care bill that Republicans want to repeal allows children to stay on their parents' insurance policy to age 26. It also provides no-cost preventative care procedures like diabetes screenings and mammograms for seniors and provides a tax credit of up to 35% for the cost of health insurance that small businesses provide for their employees.