WASHINGTON, DC -- The Service Employees International Union (SEIU) today launched a campaign to inform Latino voters about what they stand to lose if Republican lawmakers have their way and repeal the health care reform law.
The campaign includes Spanish-language radio ads and major mailings in Colorado, Nevada, and Virginia. The campaign comes as House GOP leaders are expected to bring to the floor a proposal to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Republicans scheduled the vote just after the U.S. Supreme Court late last month affirmed the constitutionality of the law. The campaign targets Latino voters and encourages them to call their lawmakers and tell them to protect their health care.
"It would be a disaster if up to 9 million Hispanics lose our access to health insurance or if insurance companies once again can deny us coverage if we are sick," the ad states.
Among the 9 million Hispanics who are at risk under the GOP's threat to repeal the Affordable Care Act are about 750,000 young Hispanics who would lose coverage under their parents' plans and almost 4 million elderly and disabled Hispanics who are now eligible for expanded preventive care under the act.
"This attack on health care is an attack on our children and their wellbeing," said Fabiola Morales-Rivera, a member of SEIU Local 1107 in Nevada. "Before the ACA passed, I worried for years what would happen to my son if he didn't have health insurance. Where is the humanity in that?"
Ms. Morales-Rivera's story is not unique. Millions of people have or stand to benefit from the health care law. Absent in the right-wing drive to repeal the law is acknowledgement of how the law benefits working people and expands access to health care.
"The High Court has spoken and before that, the public spoke," said Eliseo Medina, SEIU international secretary treasurer. "The law is constitutional and already millions are benefiting. Yet for what only can be viewed as purely ideological reasons, congressional Republicans continue to play politics with real people's lives. We have no choice. We must fight back and demand that these lawmakers act in our interest. Access to health care should not be a privilege for just the richest few."
Medina added that Republicans who vote to repeal the Affordable Care Act will only dig themselves more deeply into a hole with Latino voters who already view the GOP as hostile on numerous issues important to them, including the DREAM Act, jobs and the economy.
"Latinos see what Republicans are doing and until they support they support laws like the Affordable Care Act and Dream Act, these antics will only hurt them on Election Day," Medina said. "Republicans need to stop fighting ideological battles, listen to what their constituents want, and start working for all Americans."