Senators Murray and Cantwell: “Keep Doing What You’re Doing!”

HCFA-WA’s primary mission is to achieve state-based universal health care, but we are also a founding member organization of the Health Care is a Human Right (HCHR) Campaign. As such, we participated in recent meetings with Staff members of Washington State’s two Senators, Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray. Our “ask” for the Senators was first, do no harm to the existing ACA, Medicaid, or Medicare programs, and, second, do everything possible to advocate with their colleagues in both houses of Congress for true health care reform.

We asked them specifically to co-sponsor the Senate version of House Bill HR 676, the Improved and Expanded Medicare for All Act. While neither Sen. Murray’s nor Sen. Cantwell’s staff could promise that the senators would agree to do this at this time, they encouraged us to continue our state-based efforts and to continue to contact their offices with our concerns. We assured them that we would do so, and that we would also like to have follow-up meetings with both Senators’ health-care policy experts. We left copies of the Toolkit prepared by the Health Care is a Human Right Campaign for each Senator, as well as copies of the DVD “Fix It: Health Care at the Tipping Point.”

There is much uncertainty around health care reform at the Federal level. Bolstered by our Senators’ advice, we continue to be certain that true health care reform will occur first in a single state. To all our supporters, we say “Thanks for continuing to do what you do!”

August Recess with Sens Cantwell and Murray staff

Meeting with Casey Katims, Senior Policy Analyst for Health Care Office of Congresswoman Suzan del Bene CD 1 August 30, 2017

Our group shared current personal stories about health care access difficulties with the ACA and pointed out the superiority of a system as outlined in HR 676, the Expanded and Improved Medicare for All Act. Casey noted that 80% of his workload concerns health care, and that they support Medicare for All.

Despite repeated requests from her constituents, Rep. del Bene still does not officially support HR 676.

Casey said that HR 676 is under active review and discussion in the House Ways and Means Committee. Rep. del Bene is a member of both the Ways and Means Committee and the House Budget Committee.

It is vital that her constituents continue to voice concerns and encourage her to support HR 676. Thank you for all you do!

August Recess with Sens Cantwell and Murray staff