Steny Hoyer Says Repealing the Affordable Care Act Will Have a Devastating Impact on Thousands of Marylanders

January 10, 2017

Since its enactment in 2010, the Affordable Care Act has made a huge difference in the lives of Marylanders, including here in the Fifth District. The law took a three-pronged approach to address the problems that plagued our health care system by working to bring down the cost of health coverage; increase access to quality health care; and end discriminatory practices that prevented many Americans from being able to get covered. In all three areas, the Affordable Care Act has proven its worth, helping over 20 million Americans who were previously uninsured obtain coverage, lowering out-of-pocket costs for consumers, and banning insurers from denying coverage to those with pre-existing conditions or from charging women higher premiums for the same coverage as men. Moreover, the law also broadened access by expanding Medicaid eligibility and allowing parents to cover their adult children up to age twenty-six through their own plans.

Even as the Affordable Care Act brought affordable insurance to more and more Marylanders, Republicans in Washington have waged a partisan crusade against the law. Having vowed to repeal it for the past six years, they’ve held sixty-five votes in the House of Representatives to repeal or undermine the law’s patient protections and cost savings provisions. In all that time, they have not proposed any workable alternative that keeps Americans from losing their coverage, prevents the return of discriminatory policies, and lowers costs. Thankfully, President Obama held the power of veto, making repeal impossible during his presidency. Now, with President-Elect Trump set to take office, Republicans in Congress are gearing up to make good on their promises by repealing the law without replacing it.

Repeal with no replacement would mean an economic and health disaster for families across Maryland and our country. Were the Affordable Care Act to be repealed, 30 million Americans would lose access to health insurance, including 347,000 Marylanders. Tens of millions more would see their out-of-pocket costs rise, including nearly three million Marylanders who now have private health insurance that covers preventive services without any co-pays, coinsurance, or deductibles. Approximately 975,000 Marylanders with pre-existing conditions – such as asthma, epilepsy, or diabetes – could be denied insurance coverage once more, and women could be forced to pay higher rates than men. Forty-one thousand Marylanders between the ages of eighteen and twenty-six would lose coverage through their parents’ plans. The consequences of repeal would be felt in families and communities from Leonardtown to La Plata to College Park and everywhere in between.

Recently, I heard from Fifth District residents whose families have benefitted from the Affordable Care Act and are deeply worried about the law being repealed. One young woman, from California in St. Mary’s County, wrote to me out of concern for her family. “My father is retiring this year,” she said in her letter, “and while I will be safe on my own employer insurance plan, I fear for my younger sister who has not yet graduated and is dependent on my father and this ACA [under-26 rule] clause for her care. I am afraid a lack of coverage will discourage her from necessary and preventive medical care.”

Another constituent, from Beltsville in Prince George’s County, shared in a letter that she and her husband are “struggling small business owners,” and “the ACA gave us an opportunity to afford health care.” She went on to explain that, in addition to requiring a knee replacement herself, her husband suffers from diabetes, and “we cannot afford to pay for these healthcare services on our own” out of pocket. “Needless to say,” the woman wrote me, “we, like so many others, are now completely terrified at what is to come.”

These were just two of the many letters, phone calls, and social media messages I’ve received from across the Fifth District showing how the Affordable Care Act is working and expressing concern about Republican plans to repeal it.

These families, like so many others in Maryland’s Fifth District, have benefited from the patient protections, greater accessibility, and cost savings included in the Affordable Care Act to get the health coverage they need. Concerns about the cost of health care need to be addressed, but scrapping the life-saving and life-changing health care reforms of the Affordable Care Act wholesale is not the answer. Instead, the new Republican Congress and next administration ought to sit down with Democrats and with stakeholders from across our nation’s health care system – including patients and families – to find ways to improve the law and prevent the spike in health care costs that would result from repeal.

Republicans will soon control Congress and the White House, and they will have to own the consequences for any changes to health care in our country under their watch. Whether they pursue immediate repeal or so-called ‘repeal-and-delay,’ the negative impact of such a move on our economy and our people will be significant and felt in Americans’ everyday lives. We know that Republicans in Congress have no plan to replace the Affordable Care Act if they repeal it. If they did, we would have seen it by now.

For the sake of these Marylanders who wrote me out of concern for the future of the Affordable Care Act – and for the many others who share their fears of repeal – I will continue to fight against efforts in Congress to turn the clock back. All Americans deserve to live healthy lives, without ever having to choose between affording health insurance and putting dinner on the table or paying the mortgage. That’s what the Affordable Care Act has moved us closer to achieving – and what we must continue to strive for in the years ahead.


29 Responses to Steny Hoyer Says Repealing the Affordable Care Act Will Have a Devastating Impact on Thousands of Marylanders

  1. WTF on January 10, 2017 at 7:22 am

    I bet $peny is not covered under the ACa. He’s a despicable pos

  2. Jim on January 10, 2017 at 7:25 am

    Yes, The lazy ones.

  3. Susie on January 10, 2017 at 7:30 am

    I don’t know about anyone else, but I cannot afford the “Affordable Care” that Obamacare gave us. In addition to the monthly premiums, we would have a 6,000 deductible! Who can afford that? Definitely not the lower-income people. I say scrap the thing and start over.

  4. Rocky on January 10, 2017 at 8:55 am

    So Steny is now showing his true colors.

    We didn’t care about him being a dem before – when he was actively fighting for keeping the bases open in SoMD.
    But now he’s actually gonna sit on the bow of the titanic and speak for Obama’s failed healthcare abortion?

    Even the rats have left that one to sink on its own.


  5. Jerome Betts on January 10, 2017 at 9:27 am

    STFU! I am tired of working two jobs, just pay for other people’s health insurance! No! I don’t support you or Obama Care! What don’t you understand? Hillary lost and Obama was a complete failure. Please retire and go away.

  6. Anonymous on January 10, 2017 at 9:57 am

    Raise your hand if you have saved the promised $2500 on your healthcare. This debacle has raised my premiums by over 40%. You have to pass it to see what’s in it.

  7. werwe on January 10, 2017 at 11:27 am

    Lowering out of pocket cost for consumers? Really? My out of pocket is $5200 for my family! My premiums went up! I used to be able to get the care that I needed with just a $20 co-pay including stress tests and endoscopies. Now I have to pay out of pocket. Go screw yourself Steny.

  8. Paul Nimmerrichter on January 10, 2017 at 11:59 am

    Blah Blah Blah congressman Steny Hoyer, we can do better than Obama Care.

    • Anonymous on January 11, 2017 at 12:01 pm

      What exactly, you want to repeal it but have no DETAIL explanation of what would replace Obama care.

  9. seth on January 10, 2017 at 12:39 pm

    You’re an idiot Ole spenny boy. My premium just DOUBLED for 17.Thank god i got a new employer and insurance. It’s always failed, how many millions of dollars did you democrats spend on only to be wasted. Its never gonna work out.

  10. Tell You What on January 10, 2017 at 3:20 pm

    Why do people keep voting for this old wind bag? He needs to go

    • its cold out on January 14, 2017 at 4:11 pm

      He can be rendered ineffective by other states. This region is convinced hes keeping the federal employment here.

  11. Traci Boylston on January 10, 2017 at 3:26 pm

    The affordable care act has not benefited our family. We had great insurance through our employer. Now we pay more and get less. Have to fight to get meds and copay up for the first time ever.

  12. Tony on January 10, 2017 at 3:28 pm

    It’s amazing that we pay taxes to build roads, unemployment, infastructure ND public safety but people are so opposed to paying for healthcare. Especially when a lot of the people who benefit the Affordable Care Act (ACA) would be treated in Ears across the state, default on payments and be an even bigger burden on our economy.

    Is the ACA perfect? By no means. Single payer should have been pushed. That way all Americans could have benefited from it instead of just Americans in desperate need.

    ACA more more than just increased Medicare. There is no such thing as pre existing conditions anymore. My wife was once denied healthcare from a job because she was pregnant before the policy captivated. All children are guaranteed healthcare. There are no more lifetime limits due to conditions. Those are huge positives that we would have to trust this Congress to draft back up and vote I to law. Trust I don’t have any any political party at this moment. I’d rather amendments made to the current law than millions of Americans kicked out into the cold and financial ruin overnight due to a dogmatic political opposition to social entitlements. Just saying.

    • Willie on January 11, 2017 at 5:58 pm

      Great for you. But what about the rest of us whose premiums have doubled? I had great care prior to this disaster now I got crap because of it. So all of us who did the right thing are now being punished. Screw this debacle.

  13. M. Davis, Laplat........A on January 10, 2017 at 4:01 pm

    No, it won’t. Those that know better are not even covered under the Affordable Care Act. Among other things, they don’t wish to be included in the death panels.

  14. Anonymous on January 10, 2017 at 4:13 pm

    And yet he will have this job for life. The only thing that will remove him from this post is death (and I’m not sure about that).

  15. GW on January 10, 2017 at 4:38 pm

    When will we get smart and vote this clown out??

  16. Demwit on January 10, 2017 at 5:45 pm

    How about a “three pronged” poke in his, Obamas and Hillarys azz? That’s what they need!

  17. Grace Gardella on January 10, 2017 at 6:54 pm

    It’s not affordable!!! Simple as that!

  18. Nikko on January 11, 2017 at 8:52 am

    If Obamacare is so great why don’t you have it? Worthless individual. I hope he is some of the swampmud that Trump gets rid of.

  19. Brian on January 11, 2017 at 9:26 am

    “Steny Hoyer Says Repealing the Affordable Care Act Will Have a Devastating Impact on Thousands of Marylanders.” Well Steny FINALLY said something that is true! It will have a devastating impact, it will put more money back into the pockets of Marylanders!

  20. MarineVet on January 11, 2017 at 10:09 am

    Poster child for Term limits…

  21. werwe on January 11, 2017 at 11:30 am

    You wonder why he keeps getting elected? Look at the 5th Congressional voting distric

  22. Anonymous on January 11, 2017 at 1:22 pm

    There is a stunning amount of ignorance and BS being spouted here. Perhaps some folks should actually read something other than Breitbart. Why can’t we have something similar to what every other first world country has? Single Payer? But oh no that would be Socialism.

    • Anon on January 12, 2017 at 4:06 pm

      You do realize you are advocating that we get rid of ACA in favor of single payer, but you frame it as if conservatives are stupid for wanting to get rid of the ACA.

      I’m not saying there is a better solution in the works, because everything is such a secret at this point, but what kills me about all of you is that you cant be objective, about anything. If you are a liberal, you just whine and pout and cry that the conservatives want to repeal and replace, and in your mind that automatically means it will be worse. Not cuz it in fact will be worse, though it might be, but because it isn’t a liberal bill, that’s it, that’s the reason. If a republican cracked the economic code and made every person in America wealthy, you’d all still whine about it. But, back to the point, what if republicans actually replace it with something better??? We have reached a point where people are lunatics. When Obama speaks, there are two reactions: Libs = he speaks the truth, and Cons = he’s a liar. Doesn’t matter if he was telling the truth or lying, the opinion of the content of the speech is decided by your voting party. If Obama said water was wet, conservatives would question it. If Trump said water is wet, Liberals would call him racist. This is the reason we are so divided now as a country. There is so much hate for the opposition, yes libs, I said it, your hate is just as hateful as the hate you decry from the right. Until people start looking at the world with objectivity we are doomed. We aren’t doomed because “Obama was a terrible president”. We aren’t doomed because “Trump is an idiot who is going to destroy the country”. We are doomed because no one will cross their party and be objective. The ACA has a little bit of a good a boat load of bad, but no lib will ever admit its flawed, and that’s sad. If there are better options, don’t worry about which party offered up the solution, just worry about if the solution is better. The second that idiot Pelosi said “we need to pass the bill so that we can all find out what’s in it” the entire country should have gasped at the stupidity of that statement. But the libs didn’t, which is scary. Would you ever sign the paperwork agreeing to buy a car before finding out how much the car was gonna cost??? Of course not, but that’s what we allowed Congress to do with the ACA. We let them sign the documents, and then they told us the details…

  23. Concerned Marylander on January 12, 2017 at 6:36 am

    The AFA failed at the first prong. It did not bring down the cost of health care. I have not hward one person say that their rates went down after the AFA kicked in. Personally mine tripled.

  24. Vince on January 12, 2017 at 11:20 am

    I’ll praise the ACA just as soon as Hoyer, Pelosi, and all the other Dems are using it. Seems they exempted themselves, their staffs, and a host of other from having to use it…

  25. dianeg on January 13, 2017 at 10:05 am

    Then stop blocking the replacement. The sky is falling, the sky is falling – the sky already fell. We cannot afford, people are not seeking surgeries and dying for they cannot afford the deductibles. So get rid of this horrible bill.