Consumers Union, the public policy arm of nonprofit Consumer Reports, writes to express our strong and continued opposition to the American Health Care Act (AHCA). The new Upton-Long et. al. amendment, which provides additional funding to states that opt out of the community rating requirement, promises woefully inadequate protection for consumers with pre-existing conditions. The funds could be subject to the same uncertainty as cost- sharing reductions (CSRs), leaving consumers unsure of whether they will be able to afford coverage or out-of-pocket costs when the time comes to use their insurance. Simply put, this amendment fails to meet its purported goal: to protect consumers with pre-existing conditions from the very real threat posed by the MacArthur Amendment. Furthermore, it does nothing to address the many significant problems in the original AHCA that make coverage less accessible and affordable for all consumers. We strongly urge you to oppose this legislation.
A vote in support of the AHCA is a vote to strip American families of access to healthcare and a vote to undermine their financial security and well-being, while giving tax breaks to the wealthiest Americans. It is utterly irresponsible to approve such far-reaching legislation without an updated CBO score to fully understand the impact on consumers and on the federal budget. As a nonpartisan, independent organization that has advocated for the best consumer policies and products for more than 80 years, we strongly urge you to oppose the AHCA.