Healthcare Reform Promotes...No Healthcare

On Thursday the Trump administration finalized new rules making it easier for healthcare workers to refuse to provide care that violates their religious or moral beliefs. This advances a policy favored by anti-abortion groups and Christian conservatives closely allied with the Trump administration.

Since Trump has taken office, his administration has (ironically) focused on defending religious freedoms…but almost entirely for Christian conservatives who coincidentally make up a large part of his base. While it’s easy to understand the need to appeal to a voting base, what about appealing to the American citizens in need of real help and change? Denying abortions, birth control, and basic healthcare to millions of Americans is morally problematic regardless of your religion.

With these new rules, the administration says people like physicians, teachers, nurses, pharmacists, and faith-based charities would be "protected" from having to provide or pay for services like abortion or sterilization. But who’s "protecting" those who are now without care?

Many members of Congress have already spoken out in overwhelming opposition. It will "add to the Trump administration’s continued attacks on patient access to health care," said House Energy and Commerce Chairman Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-N.J.) and Education and Labor Chairman Bobby Scott (D-Va.) in a joint statement. "While religious liberty is a fundamental American value, it should not permit a person to cause harm to or subvert the rights of another person," the lawmakers said.

The official report cites, "This final rule revises existing regulations to ensure vigorous enforcement of Federal conscience and anti-discrimination laws applicable to the Department…" Mr. President, this is rather ironic to label this as an anti-discrimination law" when you consistently discriminate against immigrants, women, and African Americans.

It's time for change, the American people deserve better. It’s only a short 18 months until the 2020 election.