Ammo: A Right – and a Promise to the American People is at Risk

    

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What is Ammo?

Ammo — More than Words — Facts!

Your Tool to Discuss the Issues with Co-Workers, Family, Friends

Back in the day, before electronic communication changed the world, UAW members normally found out about issues that affect working people by word of mouth in their plants and reading the newspaper.

To help them, they also had a little pamphlet the International distributed to local unions called Ammo, which was circulated on the plant or workshop floor by union activists. Ammo’s purpose was to offer facts on issues critical to working people in a nonpartisan way. Ammo generally examined issues like retirement security, health care, trade, jobs, taxes, labor rights and others to help members determine which elected officials and candidates had their back — and which ones did not.

More importantly, Ammo was a learning tool designed to educate members about the finer points of policy in an easily digestible format. It was in part designed to combat the mountains of misinformation put out by conservative groups that seek to destroy the labor movement and put the interests of the wealthy above those of the average American worker.

Ammo went away for a time, but is now coming back. True to the technological revolution, it won’t be in print form. Rather, it will soon come to you via electronic means.

Here are just a few of the topics in front of Congress that we’ll be discussing in the coming months: health care, retirement security, trade, jobs, taxes, labor/workers.

Medicare is the federal insurance program that provides health insurance for (mostly) senior citizens.

Medicaid is the federal-state program that helps provide health care to low income children, long-term care and nursing home care for seniors and people with special needs, and Americans that cannot afford health care.

The Affordable Care Act — also known as Obamacare — is the health care reform law that provided quality health care for millions of Americans, stopped insurance companies from discriminating against people who had pre- existing conditions and forced them to offer plans that provide better coverage for many critical services like prescriptions, lab tests, and newborn care.

All three are perpetually under attack from the right wing whose main goal is to let corporations decide who has health care in the United States. House Republicans passed a horrible bill called the American Health Care Act (AHCA) that provided hundreds of billions in tax cuts to the rich by taking away coverage from 23 million people. AHCA undermines Medicare’s trust fund to pay for outlandish tax cuts for the rich, threatening the health care of tens of millions of seniors who paid into Medicare and count on it. Every middle-class family that ever needs long-term care will be harmed as Medicaid funding is slashed. Medicaid pays the lion’s share of the cost for long-term care.

No working family is spared by this mean-spirited bill as more people lose coverage and the cost of health care rises for everyone, including the over 150 million Americans who have health care coverage from their employers. Under this bill, we will return to the days where the uninsured must use the emergency room to gain access to the health care system, thus raising the cost of health care for those with insurance because their plans will have to help pay for emergency, uncompensated care.

Many of the regulations that prevented the insurance industry from taking unfair advantage would be repealed. It will put more of the burden on you to pay for long-term care for your loved ones. Also, your benefits could be taxed in the future under this bill.

President Trump, as a candidate, told Americans that he supports the promises made to them on keeping Medicare, saying cuts to this vital program for senior citizens would not be fair to the millions of Americans who have paid into it for decades. He also said he would oppose cuts to Medicaid.

The AHCA bill:

  • Allows discrimination against Americans with pre-existing conditions, allowing insurance companies to deny them desperately needed coverage for treatments for life-threatening conditions such as heart disease, cancer and dialysis.
  • Puts 23 million Americans at risk for losing their health care coverage over the next decade, according to neutral experts and the Congressional Budget Office.
  • Undermines Medicare’s trust fund to pay for these outlandish tax cuts, threatening the health care of tens of millions of seniors who paid into Medicare and count on it. Every middle-class family that ever needs long-term care will be harmed if Medicaid funding is slashed. Medicaid pays the lion’s share of the cost for long-term care.
  • Taxes good health insurance plans. In 2025, wealthy Americans will get tax breaks and working men and women will bear the cost under this bad bill.
  • Raises premiums on Americans age 50 to 64 by up to $13,000 a year, according to the American Association of Retired Persons’ (AARP) Public Policy Institute.

Senate Republicans are now writing a similar bill. Democrats remain solidly opposed, along with groups such as unions, the AARP, the American Association of Retired Persons, and many others.

Eight Ways the GOP Health Care Bill is Hazardous to Your Health

1. Imposes an age tax. Insurers could charge older adults five times what younger consumers pay for health insurance.

2. Allows insurers to charge higher premiums to consumers with pre-existing conditions, potentially to levels that people cannot af-ford.

3. Permit states to rely upon high-risk pools with sky-high premiums to cover people with pre-existing conditions.

4. Jeopardizes essential health benefits such as emergency ser-vices, hospitalization, prescription drug coverage, mental health services, chronic disease management and preventive care.

5. Undermines Medicare’s financial health.

6. Does nothing to address the high cost of prescription drugs.

7. Cuts Medicaid funding by $880 billion over 10 years.

8. Leaves as many as 23 million Americans without health insur-ance, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

Source: AARP


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