Today marks the 55th anniversary since Texas native President Lyndon B. Johnson signed Medicare and Medicaid into law. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-California) released this statement:
“For 55 years, Medicare and Medicaid have stood as pillars of health and economic security for millions of seniors and families. These landmark achievements fundamentally transformed our nation and have ensured that all Americans receive the support they need and the dignity they deserve.
“Yet, for decades, Republicans have worked to make Medicare ‘wither on the vine’ and to cut and cap Medicaid into oblivion. Now, as we confront the unprecedented coronavirus pandemic, Republicans are doubling down on their dangerous, anti-health care agenda, rolling back vital health care protections for seniors, families and all Americans, and arguing in court to dismantle the entirety of the Affordable Care Act. House Democrats believe in honoring our responsibility to hard-working Americans. That is why we are fighting these callous Republican attacks, and why we passed urgently needed legislation to lower the cost of prescription drugs, help generics move more quickly to market and improve Medicare’s lifesaving benefits.
“As we celebrate this important day, House Democrats remain firmly committed to Medicare and Medicaid’s bedrock promises. We will continue strengthening Medicare and Medicaid’s vital lifeline for seniors and families as we work to build a healthier, more secure and equal future for generations to come.” – Speaker Nancy Pelosi
As the United States manages the COVID-19 pandemic, healthcare access continues to be stressful for many Texans. Before the beginning of the pandemic, Texas had the highest uninsured rate in the United States. Since then, the coverage gap has expanded to nearly 29% of nonelderly adults. Texas is one of thirteen states that has not accepted Federal Medicaid Expansion funds under the Affordable Care Act. Focus now turns to Republican lawmakers in the state who have blocked attempts to accept these funds in the past.