Ahead of Trump’s Visit to Buckeye State, Ohioans Call Out Attacks on Rural Families’ Health Care

CIRCLEVILLE — Ahead of Donald Trump’s super-spreader pep rally in Circleville today, the Ohio Democratic Party hosted a virtual news conference with Chillicothe Mayor Luke Feeney, Columbus City Attorney (and southern Ohio native) Zach Klein and Circleville cardiologist Dr. Gregory Lam to discuss how Trump’s attacks on the Affordable Care Act and failed coronavirus response have harmed rural Ohio.

From Chillicothe Mayor Luke Feeney: 

“The Affordable Care Act is something that has such an important impact on the health and safety of this region, and I think when we look back at what Donald Trump promised us coming in, that we would have lower insurance premiums and the cost of prescription drugs would go down. But the reality is Ohioans are dying because they can’t afford life-saving medication — like insulin, which we all know should be super cheap. And so, what we’ve had is four years of failed promises, broken promises, things that never came true.”

From Columbus City Attorney Zach Klein, discussing the lawsuit to overturn the Affordable Care Act:

“As a matter of fact it’s so not true that the city of Columbus had to step up and sue to the president — sue the president because he’s intentionally sabotaging the Affordable Care Act and undermining the protections for pre-existing conditions, for Medicaid expansion, for children to be on [their parents’] insurance until the age of 26, all in the middle of the global pandemic. So it’s not enough that the president isn’t taking this seriously, it’s not enough that he doesn’t have a plan for the coronavirus, but the icing on the cake is that he’s trying to undermine insurance markets for the Affordable Care Act and pre-existing conditions that we need desperately right now to tackle the coronavirus so we can move forward as Americans and get people back to work and get kids back in school.”

From Circleville cardiologist Dr. Greg Lam:

“And now, just as we are reeling from COVID-19 with economic recession looming, with farming tariffs hurting my patients and record job losses, Donald Trump is trying to take away the Affordable Care Act. This legislation provides health insurance to over 20 million Americans, and if repealed, could jeopardize the coverage of over 133 million patients with pre-existing conditions. Community hospitals like mine would collapse with the burden of uncompensated care, and small towns — such as right here in Circleville — would fail because the hospital system is a large employer in the community. And all of this is occuring while we are only beginning to understand the long term health consequences of COVID-19. Eight and a half million more people now have a pre-existing condition, and they could be sick for years to come.”

In addition to this morning’s virtual news conference, the Democratic National Committee has a digital billboard running in Columbus, just west of Ohio State University’s campus.

From the Columbus Dispatch:

The Democratic National Committee unveiled an anti-Trump billboard west of Ohio Stadium on Saturday, the day of the Buckeyes’ COVID-delayed season opener.