Fighting Back: “Democrats are committed to putting patients first and protecting every American’s right to health care.”


The Weekly Democratic Party Address was delivered by Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) highlighting the Health Care for All Americans Weekend of Action.

(Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky highlighted the Health Care for All Americans Weekend of Action, which will spotlight House Democrats’ actions to protect people with pre-existing conditions and lower prescription drug prices.)

“My colleagues across the nation are holding rallies, events, and roundtables [this weekend] to highlight all of our bold legislative action to protect the health of the American people. […]

“House Democrats are committed to continue working to put patients first and protecting every American.

“These issues are just some of the ways House Democrats are driving forward what we call our For The People agenda.

“I encourage you to follow up with your representative to hear more about their work to protect and strengthen your health care. I’m proud to be part of a Democratic Majority, led by Speaker Pelosi, dedicated to working to protect and improve health care For The People.

(CSPAN link to Weekly Democratic Address: here)

Transcript: (from YouTube)

“Hi, I am Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky, and I proudly represent the 9th Congressional District of Illinois.

“Throughout this weekend, House Democrats are in their districts taking action around the number one issue for Americans today: health care!

“My colleagues across the nation are holding rallies, events, and roundtables to highlight all of our bold legislative action to protect the health of the American people.

“Since January, House Democrats have passed 10 important bills to protect our care and lower health care costs.

“Five of these bills will lower prescription drug prices by helping get lower-cost generic drugs to market faster.

“Another five of these bills reverse Republican sabotage of the Affordable Care Act, strengthen health care and protect coverage of pre-existing conditions for all the American people.

“These are just the bills that we have already passed.

“But there is more vital legislation making its way through committees like the one I sit on, and I have for almost 20 years, the Energy and Commerce Committee.

“My committee has held essential hearings on increasing drug prices – drug price transparency – to lower drug costs, investing in America’s public health system, and protecting patients from what we call surprise medical billing when they have a health care emergency.

“Other Committees have held hearings on pathways to universal health care, existential threats to reproductive rights in the United States, and alleviating racial disparities in maternal mortality and morbidity.

“Now, this week, we are in our districts talking with and listening to our constituents about these issues and more.

“You know, this is June – and that means it is Pride Month and the 50th Anniversary of the Stonewall Riots.

“As a founder of the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus and as the proud grandmother of a transgender young man, I am proud to be holding a roundtable this Friday at Howard Brown Health Clinic in Chicago. We’re calling it ‘Pride in Health Care: Addressing the Unique Health Challenges of the LGBTQ Community.’

“Pride Month is an important moment to focus attention on how we can better provide comprehensive and compassionate health care to all vulnerable communities in Chicago and across our nation.

“House Democrats have taken bold action to address this issue, but the LGBTQ community still faces unique health care challenges that have been made worse by Trump Administration policies.

“When my colleagues and I wrote the Affordable Care Act back in 2009, we included health care provisions to protect LGBT individuals from discrimination based on sex stereotyping and gender identity.

“House Democrats are committed to continue working to put patients first and protecting every American.

“These issues are just some of the ways House Democrats are driving forward what we call our For The People agenda.

“I encourage you to follow up with your representative to hear more about their work to protect and strengthen your health care. I’m proud to be part of a Democratic Majority, led by Speaker Pelosi, dedicated to working to protect and improve health care For The People. Thank you and have a wonderful weekend.”

Any bolding has been added.


Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s weekly news conference from Thursday:

Transcript: Transcript of Pelosi Press Conference

Speaker Pelosi. Good morning.

Here we are, continuing a late night into the next morning. I always say to the Members, ‘Let’s see who can hoot with the owls and soar with the eagles early the next morning.’ And they are there on the Floor with our appropriations bill.

I just want to start off the morning to say that Leader McConnell seems to take great pride in calling himself the Grim Reaper. It’s part of his political campaign. It’s part of the pride he takes as Leader of the Senate. And as you see what he wants to bury, none of these things are going to pass. They won’t even be voted on. ‘So, think of me as the Grim Reaper,’ his own quote.

He wants to bury the For The People Act for cleaner government. The Equality Act for ending discrimination against the LGBTQ community. Dreamers, to protect our Dreamers and TPS recipients. Paycheck Fairness, equal pay for equal work. Gun violence protection, commonsense background check legislation, he’s burying that. Climate Action Now. Climate Action Now, let’s bury that. Save the Internet Act, the net neutrality legislation young people are so concerned about. The Violence Against Women Act won’t even get a vote. Lowering health care and prescription drug prices won’t even get a vote.

That’s what he said about our agenda, which encompasses most of our early legislation on what we promised For The People: to lower the cost of health care by lowering the cost of prescription drugs, by building infrastructure of America in a green way, and in doing so, increasing paychecks. Lower health care, bigger paychecks, cleaner government. Not even going to get a vote.

Again, ‘Public sentiment is everything,’ President Lincoln. The Senate will certainly be hearing from the public on issues, values really, that have bipartisan support across America. This is our attempt to find our common ground. So many of these issues, whether it’s gun safety or violence against women and the rest, rank very high across the board, across party, across party lines.

Right now, I’m very proud that on the Floor of the House, as a former Appropriator, the Appropriations Committee is putting forth legislation that reflects our values to meet the needs of the American people. Already we have addressed issues like raising the funding for the National Institutes of Health, investing further in early childhood education, we are talking about. And that’s in Rosa DeLauro’s bill, Health and Human Services and Education and Labor legislation. We heard from Mr. Visclosky on the Defense bill.

So, we’re talking about a strong America, strong in our national security, our national defense, and strong in the health and education and well-being of the American people.

I would love just to read to you all the provisions of the legislation, but they’re there for you to see, and we’ll be talking about them, enlarging those issues as to what they mean to the American people.

So that is part of our legislate, investigate, litigate agenda. We’re doing this, and at the same time we are honoring our oath of office to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.

Yesterday, the President gave us, once again, evidence that he does not know right from wrong. It’s a very sad thing, very sad thing that he does not know right from wrong. I believe that he has been involved in a criminal coverup – I’ve said that before – and our investigation is demonstrating that. The Mueller Report showed obstruction of justice in at least 10, perhaps 11 places.

But for the President to be so cavalier, to disregard, to be indifferent to law and any sense of ethics about who we are as a country, to say he would invite foreign intervention further. The Intelligence Community with great confidence has put forth that the Russians interfered in our election. That’s an assault on our democracy, an assault on our democracy. This President says it’s a hoax.

He takes an oath to protect and defend the Constitution, but I guess it doesn’t include him in terms of being – to be held accountable to obey the law.

So, we have a package that we’re putting forth in light of the Mueller Report, a package of legislation, duty to report if someone comes to you, mandating that campaigns report foreign offers of assistance. It shouldn’t even – I mean, it’s so self-evident as a matter of ethics, but we’ll have to codify it, mandating a duty to report for campaigns reporting foreign interventions in our elections.

Protecting our elections with paper ballots, that’s our election security bill that Zoe Lofgren is working on. And she is working with the Senate, hoping to have bipartisan support in the House for our legislation to protect our electoral system.

Closing foreign money loopholes, that’s Mr. Sarbanes’ bill post the Mueller Report. And Mr. Thompson will be having a hearing in the Homeland Security Committee about preventing foreign disinformation. That is just a sample of some of the things that will be out there.

I believe we’re making good progress on oversight. Our Chairmen are doing a great job. I’m so proud of them. They’re winning in the courts and winning documents from the Justice Department with the thought of contempt or following up on subpoenas. And we’re going to get the truth for the American people so that they can know what the attack is on our country, what the President refused to do about it, and what he engaged in to cover up what was done.

There are so many things happening. I just want to refer to one thing, in Hong Kong. As many of you know, or some of you do anyway, the issue of China has been an important one for me since Tiananmen Square, even before, but in terms of public policy here in the Congress since Tiananmen Square. On June 4, we celebrated the 30th anniversary of the massacre in Tiananmen Square.

At the same time, we’re observing that the Chinese Government is engaged in arresting millions of Uyghurs and putting them into education camps, that they’re diminishing the democracy in Hong Kong, trying to really just eliminate the culture, the language, the religion in Tibet. The list goes on and on.

But right now, currently, as we gather here, in Hong Kong, as you know, in the last few days hundreds of thousands, if not a million people gathered in the street to protest an extradition law that the Chinese Government wants the Hong Kong Government to pass. It’s such a horrible, horribly dangerous piece of legislation.

I’m very pleased to be supporting legislation that Senator Marco Rubio and Chris Smith on the Republican side, Jim McGovern and I on our side, and others are putting forth to improve and modernize the Hong Kong-U.S. Relations Act – U.S.-Hong Kong Relations Act – and that is going to be submitted today. They’re just finalizing it, perhaps being submitted today.

But this is so wrong. And I do hope that the President will speak about human rights in China and freedoms in China when he talks about trade with the Chinese. I am pleased with Secretary Pompeo’s statement on what’s happening in China now in this regard.

With that, I’ll take any questions you have.

Press questioning followed (see transcript)


Pelosi Statement on Amicus Brief in D.C. Voting Rights Lawsuit

June 10, 2019

Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued the following statement as the U.S. House of Representatives filed an amicus brief, as authorized by the House’s Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group (BLAG), in a federal lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the denial of congressional voting rights in Congress to District of Columbia residents:

“The sacred right to be heard at the ballot box is the foundation of our freedom, and a mainstay of our democracy. For too long, the people of the District of Columbia have been dealt the outrageous injustice of paying taxes, serving in uniform and contributing to the economic power of our nation, while being denied the full enfranchisement that is their constitutional right.

“The House is proud to take this action to right this injustice, which meets our clear constitutional responsibility to ‘enfranchis[e] District residents, who should have a full and equal voice in the federal legislature,’ and which builds on years of Democratic leadership in the Congress. We salute Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes-Norton for her lifetime of leadership in the fight for the voting rights that D.C. residents deserve.

“Now, we must continue our progress, and pass Congresswoman Norton’s D.C. statehood bill, which would give the residents of Washington full voting rights and home rule. We must ensure that the citizens of our nation’s capital have a full voice in the Congress and in our democracy.”

Any bolding has been added.



  1. Pelosi Statement on Trump Administration’s Attacks on Health Care

    June 14, 2019

    San Francisco – Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued this statement after President Trump’s health care remarks:

    “The President’s cruel hypocrisy knows no bounds. While he claims to want affordable coverage, his Justice Department is busy arguing that courts should destroy protections for people with pre-existing conditions and strike down every other protection and guarantee of affordable health care for America’s families.

    “From Day One, the Trump Administration has sabotaged hard-working families’ health care, working to push families into shoddy junk plans, spike their health costs and take away their health care protections – all while pretending to care about people with pre-existing conditions. With families’ health care under attack, House Democrats are leading a Health Care Weekend of Action all across America to accelerate the drumbeat for real steps to lower health costs and prescription drug prices.

    “The American people elected a Democratic Majority that would fight to protect and strengthen their affordable health care – and that is exactly what we will continue to do.

    We will continue to run on – and win with – our commitment to protecting people’s health care.

  2. Thanks for this, Jan. I can’t believe that Trumpists want to end coverage of preexisting conditions by voting for 45 again. We know they get sick with the diseases of the poor, so why do they scorn health care that benefits themselves? It’s a mystery.

    McTurtle is a criminal of the vilest sort, just as bad as Joseph McCarthy in a different way.

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