Democrats have taken over the Senate floor Monday night in order to protest the planned repeal of ObamaCare by Republicans.
The protest is planned to last well into the early hours of Tuesday, as Senate Dems try to gain support with voters against the GOP effort to repeal the landmark legislation without a replacement plan.
According to The Hill, the protest makes use of social media, with Senate Dems using Facebook Live and Snapchat from the Senate floor.
The Senate Dems are also holding calls with constituents and various progressive groups during the protest in order to raise public awareness of the ramifications of repealing the act.
Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer appeared on MSNBC Monday night to warn the Republicans about the damage they are about to do to American health care: “If you break it, you own it.”
A press release from Schumer states:
‘Tonight, we are taking to the floor and social media to denounce this plan and warn the American people that the Democrats will be fighting tooth and nail against this potentially catastrophic move.’
Democrats in Washington are referring to the Republican plan to end ObamaCare without a plan to replace it as “repeal and run.”
Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, a fierce and dedicated Democrat known for rallying support for policies to assist working families and the middle class, is an vital figure in the protest. Warren said:
‘Get real, [Republicans] don’t have a clue what to do next. Repeal and run. That’s the Republican plan.’
— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) January 10, 2017
Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois is also in place, saying from the floor:
‘We are now in the midst of a budget resolution effort that is designed by the Republican majority to repeal ObamaCare. The Republicans hate ObamaCare. They hate it almost as much as the devil hates holy water.’
By 8:30 p.m. Eastern Time, Sens. Patty Murray of Washington, Jack Reed of Rhode Island, Tom Udall of New Mexico, Martin Heinrich of New Mexico, Durbin and Warren had all spoken from the Senate floor, holding their “talkathon,” and connecting with Democrats and constituents via social networks.
Schumer’s office stated that the protest will go until midnight or early Tuesday. The Democrats are hoping that conflicts in the Republican Party will help them drive home their point. According to Schumer, some Republicans are wary of dismissing the current law without a replacement, and want to extend the deadline for repeal in order to come up with something.
According to The Hill, Schumer told MSNBC,
‘Who would have thought the Republicans would be on the defense and Democrats would be on offense.’
The Affordable Care Act is expected to hit the Senate this week for repeal, and Dems are facing a hard battle to keep the plan in place. Only 50 votes are required for the act to be repealed, with the GOP holding 52 seats this session.
Democrats insist that if the GOP repeals ObamaCare without a suitable substitute to reign in unregulated health insurance companies it will result in a backlash by voters.
Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont weighed in on social media as well, announcing on Facebook Live and kicking off the talkathon protest. The Independent senator said:
‘The way we’re going to win this fight is when millions of people become engaged. It can’t just happen here on Capitol Hill. We need all of you involved.’
Featured image via Getty Images
H/T: The Hill