“Because of brave Americans, 32 million Americans will wake up tomorrow morning knowing they still have health care. More than 8,000 people will walk through Planned Parenthood’s doors, still able to access the basic, preventive health care they rely on.”
Washington D.C. - Today, millions of Americans breathed a sigh of relief as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) announced that there will be no vote on the disastrous Graham-Cassidy-Heller bill. The bill was the worst piece of legislation for women’s health in a generation, allowing insurance companies to no longer cover birth control, threatening maternity care for 13 million women, allowing insurance companies to charge more for pre-existing conditions, leaving at least 32 million people without health insurance, and preventing millions of people from getting basic care at Planned Parenthood health centers.
Nonpartisan groups representing nearly every part of the health care industry expressed their vehement opposition, including insurance companies, doctors, patients, hospitals, and other patient-provider groups including America’s Health Insurance Plans, ACOG, American Medical Association, the President and CEO of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, and the American Heart Association.
Statement from Dawn Laguens, Executive Vice President of Planned Parenthood Federation of America:
The Graham-Cassidy-Heller bill was a disastrous piece of legislation that would have harmed the lives of millions of Americans and devastated Planned Parenthood’s patients.
“Over the last few weeks, hundreds of thousands of people across the country have spoken out against this dangerous bill. Opponents of women’s health bet on the American people being too tired, too demoralized to keep fighting — but they bet wrong. People across the country called their senators, demonstrated in their hometowns, wrote letters, and came to Washington, D.C., to tell their stories. Because of those brave Americans, 32 million Americans will wake up tomorrow morning knowing they still have health care. More than 8,000 people will walk through Planned Parenthood’s doors, still able to access the basic, preventive health care they rely on. Thirteen million women won’t have to worry about losing maternity care, breast cancer survivors will know they won’t be charged more for health insurance, and 57 million women will still have access to birth control.
“While today compassion and reason prevailed over partisan politics, we know this fight is far from over. But instead of pushing legislation that would take health care away from millions, now is the time for Congress to work towards common sense, bipartisan health care solutions that put people first.
Planned Parenthood supporters have been speaking out in force against the Graham-Cassidy-Heller bill since day one. Over the last several days, Planned Parenthood patient advocates and supporters rallied at over 50 events across the country and on social media to oppose the Graham-Cassidy-Heller proposal. On Twitter during the Senate Finance hearing on Monday, for example, #StandWithPP and #IStandWithPP together generated over two million impressions. Planned Parenthood supporters have been an overwhelming force of opposition, making 350,000 phone calls to members of Congress and holding more than 2,700 events across the country. Since January, Planned Parenthood has gained more than 1million supporters.
The American people made it overwhelmingly clear that they didn’t want to see the Graham-Cassidy-Heller bill passed into law in addition to major medical associations and major health insurance groups who also stood up to oppose the bill. In fact, the American Medical Association said they could not support the bill because it violated the medical oath to “first do no harm.”
Even the rushed preliminary Congressional Budget Office (CBO) score on the Graham-Cassidy-Heller bill made it clear that the cost of this legislation was too high. CBO estimated that Graham-Cassidy-Heller would cut Medicaid by $1 trillion through 2026, stating that "millions of additional people would be uninsured." The score confirmed that under the unpopular and widely criticized Graham-Cassidy-Heller, Americans would pay more and get less.
The Senate should focus on productive bipartisan proposals such as the the Collins-Nelson market stabilization proposal and the Alexander-Murray discussions that were under way in the Senate HELP Committee.
Planned Parenthood is the nation’s leading provider and advocate of high-quality, affordable health care for women, men, and young people, as well as the nation’s largest provider of sex education. With more than 600 health centers across the country, Planned Parenthood affiliates serve all patients with care and compassion, with respect and without judgment. Through health centers, programs in schools and communities, and online resources, Planned Parenthood is a trusted source of reliable health information that allows people to make informed health decisions. We do all this because we care passionately about helping people lead healthier lives.