Supporters of the Affordable Care Act — also known as Obamacare — attended a town hall meeting held by five-term Republican congressman Rep. Patrick McHenry (NC) on Thursday. According to Think Progress, many of the pro-Obamacare attendees would not have health insurance without the program and they demanded to know what the congressman would suggest they do should Obamacare be repealed.
McHenry is one of the Republican House members who have voted repeatedly to defund the ACA. The coalition held their 40th vote just before they began their five-week summer recess.
Thursday in Swannanoa, NC, voters turned up to voice their opinions of McHenry’s fierce opposition to the Act.
One protester was a grieving mother named Leslie Boyd. Boyd’s son Mike was denied health insurance coverage because of a birth defect that insurers considered to be a pre-existing condition. He died of colon cancer because he could not afford to get access to treatment.
The Asheville Citizen-Times reported that another protester, Skip Edwards, 63, and his wife would not have insurance at all without Obamacare.
Edwards was laid off during the recession and both he and his wife have pre-existing conditions. Without Obamacare, they would only be able to get coverage through a high-risk pool program called Inclusive Health.
“It cost us $1,300 bucks a month — extremely expensive,” Edwards said. “It taps us out every month. But at our age and health, we’ve got to have it.”
McHenry responded to Edwards by saying that he is voting against Obamacare on principle, that he believes it’s “bad policy.”
The crowd reportedly groaned and booed when McHenry suggested that high-risk pools are a better solution than Obamacare.
Watch video of the Q&A session with McHenry, embedded via ThinkProgress.com, below:
Watch a video report about the protesters who showed up at the town hall, embedded below via WLOS-TV:
[image of Rep. Patrick McHenry at town hall via Flickr Creative Commons]