"We Can't Let Our Guard Down": Republicans Could Use Budget as Cudgel Against Medicaid

People protest against the Senate healthcare bill on June 28, 2017 in New York City. (Photo: Spencer Platt / Getty Images)People protest against the Senate health care bill on June 28, 2017, in New York City. (Photo: Spencer Platt / Getty Images)

Since election night 2016, the streets of the US have rung with resistance. People all over the country have woken up with the conviction that they must do something to fight inequality in all its forms. But many are wondering what it is they can do. In this ongoing “Interviews for Resistance” series, experienced organizers, troublemakers and thinkers share their insights on what works, what doesn’t, what has changed and what is still the same. Today’s interview is the 62nd in the series. Click here for the most recent interview before this one.

Today we bring you a conversation with Sarah Christopherson — the policy advocacy director for the National Women’s Health Network and for the joint initiative Raising Women’s Voices for the health care we need — about the recent health care fight and what the GOP might try to do next.

Sarah Jaffe: We are talking a few days after the Republicans, once again, failed to get votes for a “repeal and replace” plan for the Affordable Care Act. Your organization was involved in fighting for the ACA and has been involved in fighting for health care for a while. Let’s start with the ACA: For whatever flaws it has, it did change the politics around health care in a way that Republicans have found very difficult to change back.

Sarah Christopherson: Absolutely. I think everybody would recognize that there are things that need to be fixed, some underlying issues with the law from birth and some things that Republicans exacerbated and sabotaged that now need to be fixed. But what has been strangely exciting about this repeal effort is that it really has stopped people. [It has] made them think about everything they gained through the Affordable Care Act and has made the Affordable Care Act incredibly popular. It has also changed this conversation about how people think about health care and the role of government…

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