“Obamacare was the best thing to happen to me”

The July recess has been tough on Republican senators. CNN reports today: Recess isn’t helping McConnell’s hunt for 50 votes. It started with this reception at the airport as they left for recess:

In Pennsylvania, demonstrators gathered outside of Sen. Pat Toomey’s office, lying on the sidewalk holding signs in the shape of tombstones.

In Maine, Sen. Susan Collins said healthcare was THE issue at her 4th of July parade. “I heard, over and over again, encouragement for my stand against the current version of the Senate and House healthcare bills. People were thanking me, over and over again. ‘Thank you, Susan!’ ‘Stay strong, Susan!’ ”

At a town hall meeting in Louisiana, Sen. Bill Cassidy had his planned topic derailed by people voicing their angst over healthcare. Several people described the GOP proposal as an effort to give large tax breaks to the wealthy at the expense of poor people’s coverage.

On their Facebook page, the Indiana Republican party asked for Obamacare “horror stories,” such as “losing a doctor that you liked” or “having your premiums increased.” (Losing a doctor that you liked is a “horror story” compared to having your health insurance ripped away? Really? And it was Obamacare that caused premiums to increase? Really?) At any rate, over 10,000 people have given input so far, a massive number of them stories like these:

While this news is encouraging, we’ve heard stories of backroom deals to appease holdout GOP Senators on selective issues like opioid addiction, and that a new CBO report has been ordered. We will continue to keep a watchful eye on healthcare and do everything we can to protect it.

In the meantime, while we wait for more news on the GOP “Take Away Our Healthcare” bill, we’re proposing some actions (below) on other important issues.

Stand Up SF actions:

Following Trump’s executive order to open the Atlantic to offshore drilling, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) is set to permit oil companies to begin seismic airgun blasting to find new oil wells. This involves deafening blasts every 10-12 seconds for months on end, and devastates marine life. Department of the Interior environmental studies estimate that seismic proposals now under review would cause more than 31 million instances of harm to marine mammals in the Gulf and 13.5 million harmful interactions with marine mammals in the Atlantic, killing or injuring 138,000 dolphins and whales. Call and ask Congresswoman Pelosi to 1. Join the 103 House reps who sent Interior Secretary Zinke a letter asking him to halt the blasting, and 2. To support the Atlantic Seismic Airgun Protection Act in the House.

Call and ask Senators Feinstein and Harris to support the same bill in the Senate.

Make a public comment on it by July 21, telling the National Marine Fisheries Service that our oceans are already showing the stress of climate change, and it doesn’t make sense to harm whales, dolphins and other ocean wildlife in order to drill for more oil we can’t afford to burn. Deny any new seismic permits.

Actions with other groups:

Mon July 10, 6:30-8:30 in the Mission: SURJ (Showing Up for Racial Justice) General Meeting. SURJ works to dismantle racism within ourselves, in our communities, and in our city. Sign up here.

Thanks for all you do.