An Open Letter to the GOP Leadership in Congress

Starting this past Thursday, and for the first time in nearly 15 years, I have health insurance.  It’s not great, but it’s basic coverage that I can afford.

Prior to the ACA (or Obamacare, if you prefer), the only insurance I was eligible for was both obscenely expensive–about a third of my pay–and covered damn near nothing until I was already five to ten thousand dollars out of pocket, which was money I wouldn’t have been able to save considering the third-of-my-paycheck price tag in the first place.

My coverage is not perfect, and it is not complete, but it means that this fiftysomething will be able to see a doctor for basic and preventative care for the first time in fifteen years, and will not have to rely on luck, optimism, and the emergency room.

What I want to know is this: before you start trying to dismantle the ACA, what program will you have in place to provide the same or better coverage at the same or lower cost?  What is your plan for my health coverage, other than hoping that I die before I qualify for Medicare and you can’t block me anymore?

Because I am not giving up my card without a fight.  If the new Congress defunds the ACA, then I challenge John Boehner and Mitch McConnell to take my card from me personally and explain to me why full-time working, tax-paying, law-abiding me doesn’t deserve basic medical coverage.  I want them to look me in the eye and tell me that.

I’ll tell you what I’m going to do if they defund the ACA and I lose my coverage.  I will be submitting my medical bills directly to their offices.  If they’re not going to let me buy my own insurance, then my health care is their responsibility to cover.

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