Fox News Host Argues Stripping Coverage from Millions is No Biggie Since ‘We’re All Going to Die’

Aaron Rupar

Aaron Rupar Journalist, Think Progress

We’re all going to die. Many of us, however, hope to put that day off as long as possible.

That insight appears to be lost on Fox News’ Lisa Kennedy Montgomery. During a discussion about Senate Republicans’ decision to temporarily pull the plug on Trumpcare on Tuesday evening, Kennedy criticized progressive “hysteria” about the bill, which would cost 22 million Americans their health care, since “we’re all going to die” anyway.

“You know what, at least they are not employing any hyperbole at all. No exaggeration, no hysteria,” she said. “You know what the crazy thing is? We’re all going to die. And they can’t predict — there’s no way unless they are absolutely psychic and have a party line to heaven, they don’t know who’s going to die or when or how many people.”

The connection between having health care and lower mortality rates is well understood. One study looking at states that enacted Medicaid expansions in the early 2000s relative to neighboring ones that didn’t found “a significant decrease in mortality over five years of follow-up.”

“A subsequently analysis showed the largest decreases were for deaths from ‘health-care-amenable’ conditions such as heart disease, infections, and cancer, which are more plausibly affected by access to medical care,” the New England Journal of Medicine writes.

Another study of “Medicaid’s mortality effects” found “one life saved for every 239 to 316 adults who gained coverage. The health care bill Senate Republicans pulled the plug on would’ve resulted in 15 million Americans losing Medicaid over the next decade.

Kennedy’s talking point was extreme, but she’s not the only conservative commentator in denial about the connection between health insurance and lower mortality rates.

It’s not like Republican members of Congress have been using talking points that are a whole lot more effective, however. During a Fox News interview that aired Tuesday, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) portrayed health care coverage as an oppressive burden that low-income Americans would freely discard. Senate Republicans have been unable to identify specific provisions of the bill that would benefit their constituents. Trump has avoiding talking about the bill, instead focusing his fire on Obamacare, which his administration is actively working to sabotage.

An NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll released Wednesday finds that the Senate bill is just as unpopular as the House version, with an approval rating of 17 percent.

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Reposted from Think Progress

Posted In: Allied Approaches

Union Matters

Saving the Nation’s Parks

From the USW

From tumbledown bridges to decrepit roads and failing water systems, crumbling infrastructure undermines America’s safety and prosperity. In coming weeks, Union Matters will delve into this neglect and the urgent need for a rebuilding campaign that creates jobs, fuels economic growth and revitalizes communities. 

The wildfires ravaging the West Coast not only pose imminent danger to iconic national parks like Crater Lake in Oregon and the Redwoods in California, but threaten the future of all of America’s beloved scenic places.

As climate change fuels the federal government’s need to spend more of National Park Service (NPS) and U.S. Forest Service budgets on wildfire suppression, massive maintenance backlogs and decrepit infrastructure threaten the entire system of national parks and forests.

A long-overdue infusion of funds into the roads, bridges, tunnels, dams and marinas in these treasured spaces would generate jobs and preserve landmark sites for generations to come.

The infrastructure networks in the nation’s parks long have failed to meet modern-day demand. The American Society of Civil Engineers gave parks a D+ rating in its 2017 infrastructure report card, citing chronic underfunding and deferred maintenance.

Just this year, a large portion of the Blue Ridge Parkway, which is owned and managed by the NPS, collapsed due to heavy rains and slope failures. Projects to prevent disasters like this one get pushed further down the road as wildfire management squeezes agency budgets more each year.

Congress recently passed the Great American Outdoors Act,  allocating billions in new funding for the NPS.

But that’s just a first step in a long yet vital process to bring parks and forests to 21st-century standards. America’s big, open spaces cannot afford to suffer additional neglect.

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There is Dignity in All Work

There is Dignity in All Work