Yesterday the devastating Ryan Budget for 2014 was passed on a party line vote of 221-207 in the House of Representatives. Later that day it was solidly defeated in the Senate in a vote of 40-59. The Ryan budget would repeal the 2010 Affordable Care Act, which prohibits insurance companies from classifying being a woman as a pre-existing medical condition and eliminates co-pays for birth control. The Ryan budget would also turn Medicare into a voucher system that would leave seniors, particularly women, struggling to get coverage, and authorize the Keystone XL Pipeline. In addition, the proposed budget would restructure the way Social Security Living Adjustments are determined, threatening the stability of seniors nationwide. Paul Ryan also seeks to undo sequester cuts to the Pentagon by instead transferring the cuts to already severely impacted domestic programs.
After passage in the House, no Senate Republican offered the Ryan Budget as an amendment to the Senate Democratic proposal by Senator Patty Murray (D-WA). Senator Murray, as chair of the Senate Budget Committee, introduced the Ryan Budget where she and her fellow democrats were joined by five Republicans in voting against it. The Senate is anticipated to vote on the Murray budget on Friday.
Media Resources: Associated Press 3/21/2013; House of Representatives Office of the Clerk 3/21/2013; Politico 3/21/2013; Feminist Newswire 3/21/2013
4/15/2014 Virginia Bishops Advocate More Abortion Restrictions for Poor Women - Using the Medicaid expansion debate as a platform, the Virginia Catholic Conference issued a statement Friday calling for the repeal of a Virginia law that allows state funding of abortion care for Medicaid recipients in situations where the fetus exhibits a "gross and totally incapacitating physical deformity" or a "gross and totally incapacitating mental deficiency."
Bishop Francis DiLorenzo of the Diocese of Richmond and Bishop Paul Loverde of the Diocese of Arlington authored the statement which urges Virginia lawmakers to act to expand Medicaid to cover more of Virginia's poor. . . .
4/14/2014 Kathleen Sebelius Resigns as Secretary of Health & Human Services - President Barack Obama last week announced the resignation of Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) Kathleen Sebelius.
Noting that she will "go down in history" for "serving as the Secretary of Health and Human Services when the United States of America finally declared that quality, affordable health care is not a privilege, but it is a right for every single citizen of these United States of America," President Obama praised Secretary Sebelius for guiding the implementation of the landmark Affordable Care Act (ACA).
At least 7.5 million Americans have now signed up for health coverage through health insurance marketplaces created by the ACA. . . .