Senate Coronavirus Vote
We’re hearing conflicting reports about whether the Senate will vote on the Coronavirus emergency vote. But what we do know is that the GOP is using this crisis to line the pockets of their wealthy friends, even while failing to provide the medical and economic resources necessary to combat the virus. In fact, the GOP is trying to stuff the bill with some wretched things. As Kamala Harris tweeted, “In the middle of a pandemic, Republicans proposed excluding some health centers, disability providers, and nursing homes from receiving federal assistance. Even rape crisis centers. And they did this while proposing corporate bailouts. Disgraceful.”
Harris is responding to a provision that sounds helpful at first glance. The provision in question is a limitation on funding that the GOP stimulus bill has built into the measure that sets aside $350 billion to provide loans for small businesses. That money would be available to small businesses that don’t lay off workers. But here’s the kicker:
According to language in the bill forwarded to me by a senior Senate Democratic aide, this provision excludes “nonprofits receiving Medicaid expenditures,” which would not be eligible for those loans. This language has been interpreted in some quarters as an effort to deny funding to Planned Parenthood, a longtime GOP target. But Democratic aides think the language means a lot more than this.
Specifically, Democratic aides believe this language would exclude from eligibility for this financial assistance a big range of other nonprofits that get Medicaid funding, such as home and community-based disability providers; community-based nursing homes, mental health providers and health centers; group homes for the disabled; and even rape crisis centers.
The vote may happen Tuesday night, which could make this moot, but if the Senate still hasn’t passed their corporate bailout, we need to push them on this.
Hello, I am a constituent from ___________ calling to urge Sen. _________ to remove a provision in the Coronavirus relief package that is supposed to help small businesses but would exclude “nonprofits receiving Medicaid expenditures,” from being eligible for financial help. This provision seems to be targeting Planned Parenthood, but it might also prevent home and community-based disability providers; community-based nursing homes, mental health providers and health centers; group homes for the disabled; and even rape crisis centers from receiving funding. Instead of bailing out multi-billion dollar companies, we should be focusing on supporting these small companies.
Federal Contact Numbers:
Thom Tillis: DC: (202) 224-6342
Richard Burr DC: (202) 224-3154
Tim Scott (SC): Washington, DC: 202-224-6121
Lindsey Graham (SC): Washington, DC: 202-224-5972
Burr Kept Dangers of COVID-19 Secret. Call Him On It
A few days ago, we learned that Richard “No Socks, No Soul” Burr was privately warning a small group of donors at a Capitol Hill luncheon of the imminent dangers of the virus, comparing it to the 1918 flu epidemic that killed thousands of people. But despite these known dangers, Burr did not warn his constituents or the general public, implicitly allowing transmission of the virus to continue unabated. It’s a horribly irresponsible and hypocritical action, and he needs to be called out on it. We have a tweet and a call script you can use to call out Burr for not taking the health and safety of his constituents seriously.
But it gets worse. Thursday, evening, ProPublica reported that Burr may have engaged in insider trading, selling off $600,000-$1.8 million in stock just before the market collapsed a few days ago. So, Burr was denying the seriousness of COVID19 in public, but in private, he was warning his high-donor friends and selling off stock as fast as his fingers could dial his stock broker. Not only should he resign, he should also be prosecuted. Let’s push extra hard tomorrow. Burr’s phones should not stop ringing from the moment his office opens until the moment his staffers go home tomorrow afternoon. It’s time for him to resign.
It’s probably better to call about the coronavirus emergency legislation, BUT if you tweet, it might be worth reminding everyone that Burr knew of the dangers weeks before he told his constituents.
The Juicy Details:
Hello, I am a constituent from zip code __________ and I am calling to ask why Senator Burr thought it was appropriate to warn a private audience of big donors on Capitol Hill about the dangers of the Coronavirus but didn’t bother to issue the same warnings to his constituents? There was a lot of misinformation circulating about the virus just a few days ago, and Senator Burr could have made a huge difference by speaking out publicly about the risks associated with COVID-19. To make matters worse, Senator Burr has also engaged in insider trading, selling off stocks based on knowledge obtained through his position as a Senator. Senator Burr needs to resign immediately.
Richard Burr DC: (202) 224-3154
.@SenatorBurr thought it was OK to warn a private audience of big donors about the dangers of the Coronavirus but didn’t bother to warn his constituents. Then he sold off millions of dollars in stocks. He should resign.
Allow Nurse Practitioners to Practice without a Collaborating MD
Nurse practitioners are not allowed to maintain their own practice in North Carolina without registering with a collaborating physician. This places severe limits on NPs who are board certified. In most states, this rule has been eliminated. And during a time in which we are facing a medical emergency, we need more qualified medical providers to be able to practice without archaic limitations. This is actually a nonpartisan issue. The link below is from a conservative think tank, but it show clearly that we need to update our laws regarding NPs.
.@NC_Governor drop the outdated Nurse Practice Act rule that forces NPs in NC to have collaborating MD in order to practice. We are board certified providers that could volunteer in this crisis in our full capacity if you do this now #NursePractitioner #COVID19
Hello, I am a constituent from ____________ calling to urge Rep./Sen./Gov. ___________ to support the SAVE Act. This bill would remove the requirement that nurse practitioners and certified nurse midwives have a collaborative practice agreement to treat patients. North Carolina is one of 12 states that restrict the practice authority of nurse practitioners and certified nurse midwives unless they obtain a collaborative practice agreement with a supervising physician. And in a time when we face an approaching medical crisis, we need all of the qualified medical providers to be able to work independently without any archaic restrictions. NPs could easily volunteer in remote locations or other areas where supervising physicians would be unavailable. Thank you.
State Contact Numbers:
NC House: http://bit.ly/2CVneDK
NC Senate: http://bit.ly/2DamgAn
Governor: Phone: (919) 814-2000
Keep working on this one. We are now seeing the destructive impact of the NC GOP’s refusal to expand Medicaid. Because the NC GOP stubbornly refuses to allow the Affordable Care Act to work like it should, thousands of North Carolina residents have been unable to get health coverage. This will potentially have a huge impact when it comes to providing treatment for people with the Coronavirus. But it also impacts us in other ways. Vidant Health, in Greenville, was forced to lay off nearly 200 employees because of budget shortfalls due to people receiving treatment but being unable to pay their bills.
As G.K. Butterfield explains it, “Rural hospitals operate on razor thin margins and often do not have the capacity to absorb these costs. Studies have found that when states expand Medicaid uninsured rates for low-income adults decline drastically, which reduces uncompensated care and gives lifelines to rural hospitals. The General Assembly’s decision not to expand Medicaid has not only harmed patient access to care and the overall health care system of eastern North Carolina, but the economy as well.” With so many people facing financial difficulties, now is the time to remind our lawmakers that expanding Medicaid would not only save lives but also would protect jobs in rural communities. This call is most urgent if you have a GOP rep, as most Democrats already support it.
Hello, I am a constituent calling from ____________ to urge Rep./Sen. ______________ to support Medicaid expansion. We are facing a massive, costly public health crisis, and we need to provide people with the health coverage they need for this kind of emergency. In fact, 400,000 people would be able to get health insurance. The layoffs by Vidant Health also show that rural communities continue to suffer because of the refusal to expand Medicaid.
Call, tweet, resistbot Governor Roy Cooper to call for “shelter in place”
[Thanks to Andrea for the tweet] We need to take all data with a grain of salt, but a group of data scientists is predicting that North Carolina will soon reach a tipping point when it comes to the spread of COVID19. If we don’t have a statewide Shelter in Place order by March 28, we could face a situation where the number of deaths would be significantly higher. We would also see hospitals and medical professionals being overwhelmed and unable to handle the number of patients. Let’s encourage Governor Cooper to take decisive action to protect all North Carolinians.
.@NC_Governor it’s time to order a statewide “shelter in place.” Please do this for the sake of everyone. Many people are not heeding the warning of social distancing and this virus will overwhelm our resources in less than 10 days time #COVID19 @NCPolicyWatch #ShelterInPlace
Originally posted on Indivisible Daily Call to Action.
Re-posted with permission.
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