Press Releases

Statement from CBC Chairman on Caucus Decision to Vote “No” on CHIP/CHC Bill

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Washington, November 3, 2017 | comments

WASHINGTON – Today, the Chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), Congressman Cedric L. Richmond (D-LA-02), released the following statement on the CBC’s decision to vote “No” on the Republican reauthorization bill for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) and Community Health Centers (CHC):

“The Congressional Black Caucus is a strong supporter of the Children’s Health Insurance Program, Community Health Centers, and the other public health programs included in this bill. However, we cannot support reauthorizing these programs at the expense of Medicare and the Prevention and Public Health Fund, which provides resources for opioid abuse, heart disease, lead poisoning, and youth suicide prevention, as well as vaccines for children and tobacco education programs. We also cannot support reauthorizing these programs at the expense of the Affordable Care Act.

“This bill kicks almost a million people off their health insurance, increases Medicare premiums for seniors, and ends support for hospitals that serve a disproportionate number of low-income patients. In addition, the bill does nothing to address the financial issues with the U.S. Virgin Islands’ Medicaid program. The territory was decimated by two Category 5 hurricanes in the span of 12 days and American citizens are still struggling to access basic goods and services over a month later. 

“Healthcare is not a zero-sum game. You don’t have to take healthcare away from some in order to give it to others. Instead of doing what is right, Republicans would rather play politics with a federal program that millions of children rely on, including 120,000 in my home state of Louisiana. We hope the Senate rejects this bill and sends the House reauthorization language that we can support.”

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