Congress Reconvenes: Healthcare and Budget Issues at Top of Agenda — Here’s What You Need to Know

Congress reconvenes this week after a two-week recess. Comey testifies on Thursday — that’s important. But we can walk and chew gum at the same time, right? Maybe the Republicans can’t. So far, they haven’t shown much capacity for governing.

The Republicans need to pass a health care bill which cuts billions from healthcare spending in order to make their tax cut plans work. So, watch the Senate for movement on a new bill (the House bill is too unpalatable even for the Senate Majority). You’ll hear a lot more about how the Affordable Care Act is “broken.” Fight back on that. Here’s a good background piece: Trump, Shouting “Death Spiral” Has Nudged the Affordable Care Act Down.  Remember, we need to fix, not replace, the ACA. The goal of amendments should be to improve health care access and lower costs, NOT to cut taxes.

Republicans also need to pass appropriations by October 1 to keep the government running. First, they need to adopt a budget. Trump served up a real doozie of a budget proposal just before recess. The Republican goal again: Cut government services and entitlements in order to cut taxes (and just because Steve Bannon hates government). Here’s a list of programs that are outright eliminated in Trump’s budget (not just reduced).

Keep your eyes on our Action Alerts. Remember: It’s best to coordinate our messages.

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