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.


Reposted from Think Progress

Posted In: Allied Approaches

Union Matters

Get to Know AFL-CIO's Affiliates: National Association of Letter Carriers

From the AFL-CIO

Next up in our series that takes a deeper look at each of our affiliates is the National Association of Letter Carriers.

Name of Union: National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC)

Mission: To unite fraternally all city letter carriers employed by the U.S. Postal Service for their mutual benefit; to obtain and secure rights as employees of the USPS and to strive at all times to promote the safety and the welfare of every member; to strive for the constant improvement of the Postal Service; and for other purposes. NALC is a single-craft union and is the sole collective-bargaining agent for city letter carriers.

Current Leadership of Union: Fredric V. Rolando serves as president of NALC, after being sworn in as the union's 18th president in 2009. Rolando began his career as a letter carrier in 1978 in South Miami before moving to Sarasota in 1984. He was elected president of Branch 2148 in 1988 and served in that role until 1999. In the ensuing years, he worked in various roles for NALC before winning his election as a national officer in 2002, when he was elected director of city delivery. In 2006, he won election as executive vice president. Rolando was re-elected as NALC president in 2010, 2014 and 2018.

Brian Renfroe serves as executive vice president, Lew Drass as vice president, Nicole Rhine as secretary-treasurer, Paul Barner as assistant secretary-treasurer, Christopher Jackson as director of city delivery, Manuel L. Peralta Jr. as director of safety and health, Dan Toth as director of retired members, Stephanie Stewart as director of the Health Benefit Plan and James W. “Jim” Yates as director of life insurance.

Number of Members: 291,000 active and retired letter carriers.

Members Work As: City letter carriers.

Industries Represented: The United States Postal Service.

History: In 1794, the first letter carriers were appointed by Congress as the implementation of the new U.S. Constitution was being put into effect. By the time of the Civil War, free delivery of city mail was established and letter carriers successfully concluded a campaign for the eight-hour workday in 1888. The next year, letter carriers came together in Milwaukee and the National Association of Letter Carriers was formed.

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There is Dignity in All Work