House of Representatives vote to repeal Affordable Care Act for 56th time

In an act of symbolic dissent on Tuesday, Republican members of the House of Representatives voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act. Better known as Obamacare, these pieces of legislation were created to provide more people and families with the health insurance and care they need. While it is true that many companies have private insurance firms that give employees health care, these plans have not always had the full breadth of coverage available. Outside of preventative and emergency care, these plans often neglect vision and dental care which can be a vital part of many people’s overall health. Some people may also want to shop around for a life insurance policy at Life Cover Quotes to ensure that the people closest to them don’t have financial worries in case of an unexpected death.

What does the Affordable Care Act do? In short, it’s meant to force insurance companies to be accountable for the coverage they claim is available, expand the options of health coverage for those that need it, lower the overall cost of health care, and improve the quality of the care being provided. Since October of 2013, open enrollment has been advertised regularly and dates set for final enrollment announced alongside it. Since the ACA coverage began in January of 2014, millions of Americans who previously had no coverage had an option that could fit within their budget and provide a much needed service for better overall quality of life.

However, House Republicans as a majority don’t feel that the ACA does as it promises and have fought time and again to have it changed or even removed completely. Their reasons are as follows, directly quoting from the GOP web page on Obamacare: “ObamaCare negatively affects the physician-patient relationship, reduces competition and damages health care quality and choice.”

The vote came to 239-186 in favor of the proposed bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act. The lettering of the bill calls for the creation of panels to make plans for an alternative to the existing ACA. Though this bill did pass, it isn’t likely to make it through the Senate. Even if every Republican voted in favor of repeal, they would still need at least 6 Democratic votes on their side. Should the bill make it all the way through the Senate, President Obama has said that he will immediately veto the bill.

So why go through this trouble? Though it may prove to be ultimately fruitless, it does show their Democratic colleagues that Republicans do not approve of how things are being run. If there is to be an alternative that reaches a better compromise before Obama leaves office, it may be something to consider. But that kind of legislation takes years of negotiation to approve. As it stands, it took over 4 years for the ACA to make it from concept to implementation. It is considered by many to be one of the most important things President Obama has done with his time in office.

All of this affects us here at Rio Hondo as well. It is a mandatory part of living in California to have health coverage. The penalty for not having coverage is a hefty fine. While we do pay a small health fee when we register for classes here on campus, that isn’t enough to be considered full health insurance. Not only does health insurance cover people in case of injury or illness, it provides means for easy access to preventative care. Also written into the law is the necessity for birth control coverage to be an option for anyone who wants it. While it is legal for religious organizations and religious businesses such as Hobby Lobby or Chick-Fil-A to deny contraceptive coverage in their versions of ACA, the option is still provided to those who want it, directly from the government, at no additional cost.

In the end, all of this comes down to improving people’s access to health care. Though there may be drastically different views on how to achieve that, ultimately all sides want the same result. People need to be able to care for themselves as best as they can and in a way that can fit into their budget. Otherwise, emergency care costs that aren’t paid are passed down to the tax payer, resulting in higher taxes and more costly insurance. That is a no win scenario. Here’s hoping that the conflict in the aisles of Washington D.C. come to a sound and reasonable resolution.