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Another unemployment report this morning showed millions are still filing for unemployment amid the coronavirus pandemic, even as some businesses begin to reopen. For many, losing their job means losing their health care, too.
But Republicans like Thom Tillis aren’t making it any easier to gain access to coverage. Instead, he continues to stand silently as the administration refuses to open a special enrollment period for the Affordable Care Act’s federal health insurance marketplace and has made it clear that he supports anything that will take the ACA “off the table.” That includes refusing to condemn the lawsuit that could destroy the entire Affordable Care Act, including coverage for 20 million people who have insurance through the law and protections for 1.7 million North Carolinians living with pre-existing conditions.
And thanks to Thom Tillis, North Carolina has not expanded Medicaid, preventing 634,000 North Carolinians from gaining health coverage and leaving North Carolina’s rural hospitals struggling to stay afloat.
Even as social safety net programs provide a lifeline during the coronavirus pandemic, the Washington GOP continues to plow forward with efforts to undermine health care access and refuse to continue enhanced unemployment benefits.
Thom Tillis has built a name for himself attacking health care and gutting benefits for people out of work, decisions that have left North Carolina unprepared for the public health crisis we face today and are hurting working families across the state.
That’s why North Carolinians won’t be fooled by his television ad claiming he’ll “remember who needs [help] the most.” They know that “if you lose your paycheck in North Carolina, you can thank Tillis for being an architect of one of the stingiest state unemployment programs in the country.”
In November, voters are ready to elect leaders like Cal Cunningham who will fight to build a strong safety net for families to weather the economic impact of any storm, including protecting and improving the Affordable Care Act, expanding Medicaid, and extending and increasing unemployment benefits.
By Christopher Rugaber – June 4, 2020