TAG U.S. and Global Health Policy Director
With the hasty passage of the tax and health care bill passed along party lines yesterday afternoon, Congress has sent a clear message on how they prioritize communities living with and vulnerable to HIV, tuberculosis (TB), and hepatitis C virus (HCV) in the upcoming mid-term election year. The bill was signed on December 22, 2017 by the President, and it hands massive tax-cuts to corporations and the wealthy. In an unjust exchange, more than $1.5 trillion will be added to the federal deficit and an expected 3 million Americans will go uninsured with the repeal of the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) individual mandate. Treatment Action Group (TAG) echoes and joins community condemnation of the tax bill, and its inevitable effects to target and further dismantle important health and social programs.
“Simply put, the math does not add up in this horrific tax bill,” said Suraj Madoori, U.S. and Global Health Policy Director of TAG. “This bill will only balloon our federal deficit, and in the end serves as cover for the administration and Congress to advance its disgraceful agenda on the total destruction of the Affordable Care Act, Medicaid, research, and programming that communities hardest hit by HIV, TB, and HCV rely on.”
In addition to passing the tax bill, lawmakers continue to scuffle on addressing a number of broken promises made to our communities such as stabilizing the health insurance markets, ensuring CHIP and community health center funding, and addressing rising drug prices. TAG will continue to call on Congress to address these outstanding issues. We will also prioritize the protection of federal research and health care programs during this critical election year, while advancing a vision on policies that truly achieve health care for all and uphold the right to science for our communities.