LaMalfa has voted again and again to make health care unavailable to large numbers of CD1 residents, and to make it more expensive to those who have it.
LaMalfa voted dozens of times to repeal all or part of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), despite the fact that the ACA abolished pre-existing condition requirements in insurance policies, and provided health insurance to more than 100,000 District residents – almost one sixth of the entire District. Many District residents addressed town halls held by LaMalfa and shared their stories of how they would not still be alive were it not for the ACA. Even as it was a lifesaver for some, the ACA increased health insurance premiums for some families. LaMalfa repeatedly offered anecdotes of how, under the ACA, some District residents saw their health insurance premiums increase. (He never seemed to repeat the stories of District residents whose lives were saved by the ACA).
Instead of treating premium increases as a problem to be solved for the small number of people who saw them go up, LaMalfa followed the GOP party line in insisting that the entire Act be repealed. He voted for the highly unpopular, Republican sponsored American Health Care Act, an act that failed when Senator John McCain voted against kicking thousands of his constituents and millions of other Americans off health insurance.
To make possible huge tax cuts for corporations and the wealthiest Americans, the tax bill (HR 1) LaMalfa has supported eliminates the ACA’s “individual mandate” that requires all adults to buy health insurance if it is not otherwise provided to them. The premiums for such insurance are subsidized by the federal government on a sliding scale. For a family of four, a subsidy is available for households making up to $98,400 per year. According to the Congressional Budget Office projection, about 13 million people nationally are expected to drop health insurance if they are not required by law to buy it. The GOP expects that leaving these 13 million people uninsured will “save” the federal government $400 billion, which LaMalfa and other Republicans can then hand over to corporations. Taking 13 million people out of the insurance pool (about 30,000 on average in each Congressional district) is expected to increase insurance premiums for everyone who remains insured; this is because healthier people would be expected to drop the insurance and “wing it”.
These are, however, false savings. Studies show that people who do not have the ability to pay tend to seek care from emergency centers – which is the most expensive care available.
LaMalfa votes to make CD1 residents sicker and poorer.