Words & Photos by Josh Brokaw
A group of about 20 people gathered along East Martin Luther King Jr. Street in front of the Gateway Commons this Friday, September 22, to register their protest against the Republican health care bill currently proposed in Congress by Senators Lindsey Graham (South Carolina) and Bill Cassidy (Louisiana).
“The bill for health care is coming up again for a vote in the Senate,” said Rebecca Elgie, who’s worked on a proposal for single-payer health care with the Campaign for New York Health. “We’re very concerned about this bill, it’s going to cut Medicaid for thousands of poor and needy people, and it’s going to cut funding for needed health services for women, and it could stop states from passing their own bill to cover state-wide, which is something I’ve worked on for a number of years … this could be devastating to New York State. Millions would be cut from the budget through Medicaid, and many people would be cut off from having the health care they need.”
Elgie said she has been working on the campaign for single-payer health care in New York “for 15 years, and in many ways I’m most optimistic. But it would be devastating if it took away the states’ rights to do their own bill, which this bill would do.”
The campaign against Graham-Cassidy, Elgie said, is focusing on calling Republican senators from Alaska and Maine, and on Rep. John Faso, a Republican from Long Island.
Several people from the group went upstairs to Rep. Tom Reed’s office on the fourth floor of the Gateway Commons, but found no one home.
Instead, there were these two signs on the door indicating Reed’s staffer’s office hours, or lack thereof – you can be the judge of how to interpret these two signs.
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