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Say You’re a Health Care Voter

Sick of the attacks on the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Medicare, and Medicaid? Step up and declare you are a Health Care Voter.

 

We at OTYCD spent a good chunk of 2017 rallying you to call your MoCs and urge them to fight Trumpcare, Trumpcare 2.0, Trumpcare 3.whatever, and the GOP tax bill, which contained provisions that weaken the ACA.

 

We also encouraged you to urge your MoCs to renew the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), which the GOP-controlled Congress allowed to lapse for months.

 

And we have asked you to remain alert to attacks on Medicare and Medicaid, which might come this year at the behest of GOP ghouls who will demand cuts to social programs now that they voted to add $1.5 million to the deficit by giving the most wealthy people and corporations a huge, entirely unnecessary tax cut.

 

The Health Care Voter campaign is a project co-chaired by Alyssa Milano, Topher Spiro, and others. It is an effort to encourage more than 1 million people to take the Health Care Voter pledge and promote the idea to friends and family in person and on social media.

 

In general, Health Care Voters fight against attacks on the ACA, Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP, and other government-funded programs and services that help the sick and help keep us all healthy.

 

Health Care Voters believe that health care is a right, not a privilege, and they pledge to vote their values by supporting candidates who defend these programs and voting out those who don’t.

 

 

See the Health Care Voter website and take the Health Care Voter pledge:

https://healthcarevoter.org

 

 

Read stories from committed Health Care Voters that explain why they took the pledge:

https://healthcarevoter.org/#health-care-voters-in-action

 

 

Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the page. And tell your friends about the blog!

 

 

Follow the Health Care Voter project on Twitter:

@HealthCareVoter

 

 

Like it on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/healthcarevoter

 

 

Buy Health Care Voter merch:

Health Care Voter Shop

 

 

Follow expert Topher Spiro, Health Care Voter co-chair, on Twitter:

@TopherSpiro

 

 

Follow actress Alyssa Milano, Health Care Voter co-chair, on Twitter:

@Alyssa_Milano

 

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Learn Which 30 State Attorneys General Are On the Ballot In 2018 — UPDATED June 9 So You Can Vote Out the Bums Trying to Hurt People Who Have Pre-Existing Conditions

Learn which 30 state attorneys general are on the ballot in 2018, so you can vote out the state AGs who are attacking the 130 million Americans who have pre-existing conditions, and so you can support the state AGs who are defending those vulnerable people. 

 

The attorney general (AG) is the state’s lead legal officer. State AGs have been crucial to curtailing and/or stopping the agenda of Trump and his cabinet. Several banded together to sue when Trump tried to implement his various Muslim travel bans, and they banded together to sue when Department of Education head Betsy DeVos tried to roll back protections for student borrowers who were cheated by for-profit schools.

 

The state AG is often, but not always, an elected position. In some states, the governor appoints the AG instead.

 

AGs can form part of a triplex–a situation in which the governor, the attorney general, and the secretary of state all belong to the same party. This is distinct from a trifecta, in which the governor and both chambers of the state legislature belong to the same party. In either case, when the three posts yield a triplex, it can be easier for party officials to impose their agenda. As of January 1, 2018, there are 23 Republican triplexes and 11 Democratic triplexes.

 

Below is a list of state AG posts that are open in 2018, with notes on whether the incumbents will run or not.

 

 

Update, June 9, 2018: By now you have heard about the insane response from the Department of Justice (DOJ) to a goofy lawsuit from several state attorneys general that would kill the ACA and end up removing protections that ensure that people with pre-existing conditions can get health insurance.

 

A total of 20 state AGs are suing to kill the Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare, and the vital protections it enshrines. As of now, 16 state AGs and the AG for the District of Columbia have countersued to defend the ACA.

 

We have updated our April 2018 post on which states are holding AG elections in 2018, and we are identifying whether the incumbents are defending the ACA or trying to destroy it. We’re also identifying states that have not entered either lawsuit, and naming Democratic incumbents and challengers who you can nudge to join the 17 who are fighting for the ACA.

 

There’s been a lot of attention to the 2018 Congressional races, and there should be. But please don’t neglect state-level races such as these. Attorneys general have been a valuable force for defending against the horrors of the Trump administration. Please reward and support those who are fighting back, and vote out those who are not.

 

As with the Congressional races, all of the state attorney general elections take place on Tuesday, November 6, 2018.

 

 

Alabama: Republican incumbent Steve Marshall will run for his first full term. He was appointed in 2017 after Republican Luther Strange was appointed to fill the Alabama Senate seat vacated by Jeff Sessions. Alabama has a Republican triplex.

At least one Democrat, Chris Christie (yes, that’s his name, and yes, he’s a different guy than the outgoing New Jersey governor), will appear in the June 5 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Alabama is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

Democrat Joseph Siegelman defeated Chris Christie in the June 5 primary. Siegelman is the son of a former Alabama governor and AG who was charged and ultimately served time for corruption and obstruction of justice charges.

He has never run for public office before. He does not appear to have made a statement about the anti-ACA lawsuit, but he has spoken about fighting the opioid epidemic, and he has generally expressed a commitment to defending vulnerable people.

See Democrat Joseph Siegelman’s website and donate to his campaign: https://www.siegelman2018.com

Follow him on Twitter: @JoeSiegelman

 

 

 

Arizona: As of January 1, 2018, Republican incumbent Mark Brnovich had not decided if he would run for a second term. Arizona has a Republican triplex.

At least one Democrat, January Contreras, will run in the August 28 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Arizona is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

Brnovich appears to be running again. Contreras is his Democratic opponent. She does not appear to have made a statement about the anti-ACA lawsuit, but we can tell from her website that she’d be joining the 17 if she was in charge.

See Democrat January Contreras’s website and donate to her campaign: https://www.januaryforaz.com

Follow her on Twitter: @JanuaryAZ

 

 

 

Arkansas: Republican incumbent Leslie Rutledge will run for a second term. Arkansas has a Republican triplex.

As of January 1, 2018, no Democrats had signed up for the May 22 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Arkansas is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

Fortunately, since we wrote this post, a Democrat joined the race: Mike Lee. While he has not made a specific public comment about the anti-ACA suit joined by his opponent, it’s clear from his website that he’d oppose it.

 

See Democrat Mike Lee’s website and donate to his campaign: http://electmikelee.org

Follow him on Twitter: @ElectMikeLee

 

 

 

California: Democratic incumbent Xavier Becerra will run for his first full term. He was appointed in January 2017 after then-AG Kamala Harris won a California Senate seat in 2016. California has a Democratic triplex.

California uses a top-two primary system for its AG race, which sends the top two vote-getters in the June 5 primary to face each other in the general election. As of January 1, 2018, one other Democrat and two Republicans had committed to the primary.

 

Update, June 2018: California is one of the 17 states countersuing to defend the ACA. Becerra is leading the charge.

Becerra won his June 5 party primary and will face opposition in the fall.

See Xavier Becerra’s website:

https://xavierbecerra.com

Follow him on Twitter:

@XavierBecerra

 

 

 

Colorado: Republican incumbent Cynthia Coffman is leaving the AG post to run for governor.

At least five Democrats will run in the June 26 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Colorado has not joined either of the lawsuits. Ballotpedia shows that the Democratic AG primary field is down to two: Joseph Salazar and Phil Weiser.

Neither candidate appears to have made a public statement about joining the countersuit. Neither devotes an explicit heading to the ACA in the issues section of their campaign sites, but Weiser published a blog post in May 2018 about fighting for affordable, accessible health care.

See Phil Weiser’s website and donate to his campaign: https://www.philforcolorado.com

Follow Weiser on Twitter: @pweiser

See Joe Salazar’s website and donate to his campaign: https://salazarforcoag.com

 

 

 

Connecticut: Democratic incumbent George C. Jepsen has chosen not to run for a third term. Connecticut has a Democratic triplex.

At least one Democrat, former federal prosecutor Chris Mattei, has committed to run in the August 14 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Connecticut is one of the 17 states countersuing to defend the ACA. 

On June 8, Chris Mattei tweeted in favor of the countersuit:

The DOJ, which should be a refuge for the exploited & powerless, just argued in court that 52 million people w/ pre-existing conditions can be denied coverage contrary to the ACA. This is disgusting. This is not justice.

See Chris Mattei’s website and donate to his campaign: https://matteiforct.com

Follow him on Twitter: @ChrisMatteiCT

 

Mattei has since been joined in the August 14 Democratic primary by Paul R. Doyle and William Tong.

Weirdly, Doyle’s webpage isn’t loading at the moment; we’ll update this post accordingly when it is.

 

Tong has not given a statement about the countersuit but his campaign site is dead clear that he does not like what Trump is doing in general, and will resist his agenda.

See William Tong’s website and donate to his campaign: http://www.williamtong.com

Follow him on Twitter: @WilliamTongCT

 

 

 

Delaware: Democratic incumbent Matthew Denn has chosen not to run for a second term. Delaware has a Democratic triplex.

At least one Democrat, Tim Mullaney, will run in the September 11, 2018 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Delaware is one of the 17 states countersuing to defend the ACA. 

Mullaney has since been joined in the party primary by Kathy Jennings, Chris Johnson, and LaKresha Roberts.

Weirdly, Mullaney does not appear to have a campaign site right now, just a Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/Mullaney-2018-1716354568406764/

If we find a website or Twitter handle for him, we’ll update accordingly.

 

Jennings has not made a statement in favor of the countersuit, but it’s reasonable to infer from her website and Twitter feed that she supports it.

See Kathy Jennings’s website and donate to her campaign: https://www.kathyfordelaware.com/priorities

Follow her on Twitter: @KathyForAG

 

Like Jennings, Johnson has not made a specific statement about the countersuit, but it’s reasonable to infer from his website and Twitter feed that he supports it.

See Chris Johnson’s website and donate to his campaign:

https://www.chrisjohnsonforag.com

Follow him on Twitter:

@ChrisJohnsonDE

 

Roberts is in the same boat as her Democratic rivals: Hasn’t made a statement about the countersuit, but would clearly support it.

See LaKresha Roberts’s website and donate to her campaign:

http://www.lakreshafordelaware.com

Follow her on Twitter: @lakreshaforDE

 

 

 

Florida: Republican incumbent Pam Bondi is term-limited out. Florida has a Republican triplex.

At least one Democrat, Ryan Torrens, will appear in the August 28 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Florida is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

Torrens has since been joined in the primary by Sean Shaw, and there’s still time for other Floridians to jump in to the state attorney general race; the filing deadline is June 22, 2018.

 

Torrens has not made a specific statement against the anti-ACA suit, but a look over his website leaves no doubt that he’s not in favor.

See Torres’s website and donate to his campaign: https://www.ryanforattorneygeneral.com

Follow him on Twitter: @RyanforFLAG

 

Ditto for Sean Shaw: No specific comment on the suit, but judging by his website and Twitter feed, we doubt he supports it.

See Shaw’s website and donate to his campaign: https://seanshaw.com

Follow him on Twitter: @SShawFL

 

 

 

Georgia: Republican incumbent Chris Carr will run for his first full term as AG. He was appointed in October 2016 after Republican Samuel S. Owens resigned to take the presidency of Kennesaw State University.

As of January 1, 2018, no Democrats had committed to the May 22 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Georgia is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

A Democrat has since stepped up to challenge Carr: Charlie Bailey.

Bailey hasn’t made a public comment about the lawsuit, but he’s endorsed by the Democratic Attorneys General Association, which is promising, seeing as it’s Democratic AGs who are pressing the countersuit.

See Charlie Bailey’s website and donate to his campaign: https://charlieforgeorgia.com/home/

Follow him on Twitter: @charlie4georgia

 

 

 

Idaho: Republican incumbent Lawrence Wasden will run for a fourth term as AG. Idaho has a Republican triplex.

As of January 1, 2018, no Democrats had committed to the May 15 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Idaho has not joined either of the lawsuits.

A Democrat, Bruce Bistline, has since joined the AG race, but the Idaho situation seems weird. We found a 2014 (repeat, this is NOT A CURRENT ARTICLE) story online that stated that Bistline would not campaign actively. He appears to be doing the same this time around, too, but he hasn’t said as much to the local press.

Ballotpedia definitely lists Bistline as the Democratic AG candidate for 2018, but we can’t find anything that looks like a campaign website for him. The National Association of Attorneys General confirms that as of May 25, 2018, Bistline did not have one.

The filing deadline to run was back in March, so it’s too late for the Dems to choose someone else.

We get that Idaho is a pretty damn red state. But c’mon, Idaho friends, could you at least pick a Democratic AG candidate who will actually, you know, show up and put up a fight? We at OTYCD think that y’all can do better than Bistline.

 

 

 

Illinois: Democratic incumbent Lisa Madigan decided not to run for a fifth term as AG.

At least eight Democrats will run in the March 20 primary, including Renato Mariotti.

 

Update, June 2018: Illinois is one of the 17 states countersuing to defend the ACA. 

Kwame Raoul emerged victorious from the Democratic primary. (Sorry, Renato. We still love you and we still want people to follow your Twitter feed.)

 

On June 9, Raoul tweeted in favor of the countersuit:

As the son of a community physician and a cancer survior myself, I believe everyone should have access to health care, regardless of income or pre-existing conditions. If Donald Trump won’t enforce the law and protect people, as attorney general, I will.

And he released the same statement as a press release:

https://kwameraoul.com/news/raoul-responds-to-trump-effort-to-gut-the-aca/

 

See Raoul’s website and donate to his campaign: https://kwameraoul.com

Follow him on Twitter: @KwameRaoul

 

 

 

Iowa: Democratic incumbent Tom Miller will run for his tenth term in office. He held the post from 1978 to 1990, when he stepped away to run for governor. He lost, ran for AG in 1994, and has successfully held the office ever since.

As of January 1, 2018, no Democrats had committed to the June 5 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Iowa has not joined either of the lawsuits.

The filing deadline passed without any Democratic challengers leaping in.

In the past few days, Miller has tweeted from his official AG account (@AGIowa) in favor of defending the integrity of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which Mick Mulvaney is trying to gut. He’s also retweeted fellow state AGs talking about pushing back against nasty stuff that Betsy DeVos is trying to pull. But Miller hasn’t said anything related to the ACA or health care.

Democrats in Iowa, how about you call Miller’s office and ask him to join the 17 who are countersuing to save the ACA?

We can’t find a campaign website for Miller, but here’s a link to his page on VoteSmart, which has an email address for his campaign:

https://votesmart.org/candidate/biography/1768/tom-miller#.WxvtGC2ZOCc

 

 

 

Kansas: As of January 1, 2018, Republican incumbent Derek Schmidt had not decided whether he would run for a third term. Kansas has a Republican triplex.

As of January 1, 2018, no Democrats had committed to the August 7 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Kansas is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

Democrat Sarah Swain seems to have snuck in right at the June 1 filing deadline to run for state AG. Schmidt has since committed as well.

Swain’s candidacy is so new that she doesn’t appear to have a website or a social media presence yet. We will update this post accordingly once that changes.

Here’s a June 1, 2018 article on Swain’s entry into the race: http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2018/jun/01/lawrence-attorney-sarah-swain-files-kansas-attorne/

 

 

 

Maryland: As of January 1, 2018, Democratic incumbent Brian Frosh had not decided whether he would run for a second term.

As of January 1, 2018, no other Democrats had committed to the June 26 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Maryland has not joined either of the lawsuits.

Frosh has made up his mind, though. He’s running again.

He does not appear to have made a comment on either of the suits on either his campaign site or his Facebook page.

Marylanders, how about you call Frosh’s office and ask him to join the 17?

Frosh’s campaign site is here: https://www.brianfrosh.com

 

 

Massachusetts: Democratic incumbent Maura Healey, who is awesome, will run for a second term.

As of January 1, 2018, no other Democrats had committed to the September 4 primary. But that’s OK, because Maura Healey is awesome.

 

Update, June 2018: Massachusetts is one of the 17 states countersuing to defend the ACA, because Maura Healey is awesome (did we mention that? Because she is, indeed, awesome.).

Healey will face no challengers in the September 4 primary.

See Healey’s website and donate to her campaign: http://www.maurahealey.com

Follow her on Twitter: @maura_healey

 

 

Michigan: Republican incumbent Bill Schuette is term-limited out. Michigan has a Republican triplex.

Update, June 2018: Michigan has not joined either of the lawsuits.

 

Since this post originally went up, the Michigan Democratic Party convened and chose Dana Nessel as their AG candidate.

You might remember Nessel. She did that amazing November 2017 campaign ad pushing back against sexual harassment.

She hasn’t yet said anything about either lawsuit but hey, Michiganders? We at OTYCD bet she’ll come out in favor of joining the 17 if you call and ask her to do so.

See her website and donate to her campaign: https://www.dana2018.com

Follow her on Twitter: @dananessel

 

 

 

Minnesota: As of January 1, 2018, Democratic incumbent Lori Swanson had not yet decided if she would run for a fourth term. Minnesota has a Democratic triplex.

At least four other Democrats have announced they will run in the August 14 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Minnesota is one of the 17 states countersuing to defend the ACA “by and through its Department of Commerce.” 

Swanson has since announced she will run for governor of Minnesota.

Five Democrats have filed for the August 14 primary, most notably Keith Ellison, who is giving up his House of Representatives seat in the 5th District to aim for the open Michigan state AG post.

On June 8, Ellison tweeted this message with a link to a Politico story:

Trump’s Justice Department is calling on the courts to throw out protections for people with pre-existing conditions, but CA AG Xavier Becera fights back.

See Ellison’s website and donate to his campaign: https://keithellison.org

We’ll add his AG-specific Twitter account once he creates one.

 

We at OTYCD are having trouble with Tom Foley at the moment. Ballotpedia redirects to the wrong Tom Foley (a Republican in another state), and Minnesota’s Tom Foley is far from the only Tom Foley in politics. We can’t seem to find a campaign site for him, either.

Consider this an invitation to Minnesota AG candidate Tom Foley’s folks to get in touch with us here (see the About & Subscribe page) so we can update this section accordingly.

 

Debra Hilstrom has not made a specific statement about the countersuit but we have no reason to believe she wouldn’t support it.

See Hilstrom’s website and donate to her campaign:  https://debrahilstrommn.com

Follow her on Twitter: @debrahilstrom

 

Matt Pelikan has not made a specific statement about the countersuit, but the header of his Twitter page is him standing with Senator Elizabeth Warren, so, no worries there, we think.

See Pelikan’s website and donate to his campaign: http://mattpelikan.com

Follow him on Twitter: @mattpelikan

 

Mike Rothman also has not made a specific statement in favor of the countersuit, but judging by his website, he’s probably in favor.

See Rothman’s website and donate to his campaign:

http://mikerothmanformn.com

Follow him on Twitter (warning–he doesn’t tweet much):

@MikeRothman4MN

 

 

 

Nebraska: Republican incumbent Doug Petersen will run for a second term. Nebraska has a Republican triplex.

At least one Democrat, Evangelos Argyrakis, will run in the May 15 primary.

Update, June 2018: Nebraska is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

Unfortunately Democrats might be up the creek in this race. Argyrakis is the only Democratic candidate, but local papers reported in April that he assaulted his 82-year-old father after accusing him of taking money from his mother. So, erm, awkward.

We at OTYCD can’t seem to find a campaign website for him either, which is probably for the best. If we learn about whether a write-in campaign is allowed, we will update accordingly.

 

 

 

Nevada: Republican incumbent Adam Laxalt is running for Nevada governor instead of a second term as AG. Nevada has a Republican triplex.

At least one Democrat, state Senator Aaron Ford, will appear in the June 12 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Nevada has not joined either of the lawsuits.

Since this post came out, Stuart MacKie entered the Democratic primary.

 

On June 9, Aaron Ford tweeted:

Nevadans with preexisting conditions like asthma or diabetes deserve health care. As I will stand up for the thousands of Nevadans who could lose health care access because of this dangerous lawsuit.

See Ford’s website and donate to his campaign:

https://www.fordfornevada.com

Follow him on Twitter: @AaronDFordNV

 

Stuart MacKie has proven more elusive. We will add his campaign website and Twitter account if and when we locate them.

 

 

 

New Mexico: Democratic incumbent Hector Balderas will run for a second term.

No other Democrats have announced they will run in the June 5 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: New Mexico has not joined either of the lawsuits.

Hey, New Mexicans, how about you call or email Balderas and ask him to join the 17?

See his website and donate to his campaign: http://www.hectorbalderas.com

 

 

 

New York: Democratic incumbent Eric Schneiderman will run for a third term. New York has a Democratic triplex.

No other Democrats have announced they will run in the September 11 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: New York is one of the 17 states countersuing to defend the ACA. 

Ahem. Since we wrote this, Eric Scheiderman was outed as a horrific abuser. He resigned within hours of the news breaking. New York Solicitor General Barbara Underwood is filling in, but is not running for the AG post.

Four Democrats have entered the September 13 primary: Zephyr Teachout, Sean Patrick Maloney, Leecia Eve, and Letitia James. As of June, all are actively gathering signatures so they can appear on the ballot.

 

Zephyr Teachout does not appear to have said anything about the countersuit but we doubt she’d be against it.

See her website and donate to her campaign: https://zephyrforny.com

Follow her on Twitter: @ZephyrTeachout

 

Sean Patrick Maloney announced on June 6, 2018 that he’d run for AG, but he might not abandon his re-election campaign for his House of Representatives seat in New York’s 18th Congressional District while he does it (FWIW, we at OTYCD think this behavior is hinky. Take the risk, dammit).

He hasn’t made a specific statement about the countersuit but it’s clear he’s for it.

The only campaign site Maloney has up right now is his CONGRESSIONAL site: https://maloneyfornewyork.com

Follow him on Twitter: @MaloneyforNY

 

 

Leecia Eve has not made a public statement but we see no reason to believe she doesn’t back the countersuit.

See her website and donate to her campaign: https://leeciaeve.com

 

 

Letitia James has not made a specific public statement and doesn’t yet have a campaign site that’s specific to the AG race, but from what we’ve seen, we believe she’d support the countersuit.

She’s talking about her AG candidacy on her personal Twitter: @TishJames

 

 

 

North Dakota: As of January 1, 2018, Republican incumbent Wayne Stenehjem had not decided if he would run for a sixth term. He is the longest-serving AG in the state’s history. North Dakota has a Republican triplex.

No Democrats have announced they will run in the June 12 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: North Dakota is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

David Clark Thompson has since become the only Democrat in the state AG race. He needs to step up his Twitter game (two tweets, both in May, that’s all), and he doesn’t appear to have said anything about the anti-ACA suit, but we don’t see anything on his site that contradicts the notion that he’d oppose the suit.

See his website and donate to his campaign: http://www.davidthompsonforndag.com

Follow his Twitter feed: @thompsonndag

 

 

 

Ohio: Republican incumbent Mike DeWine will run for governor instead of a third term as AG. Ohio has a Republican triplex.

At least one Democrat, Steven Dettelbach, will run in the May 8 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Ohio has not joined either of the lawsuits.

Dettelbach has not said anything about either lawsuit. Ohio Democrats should ask him to support the 17.

See Dettelbach’s site and donate to his campaign: https://steveforohio.com

Follow his Twitter feed: @SteveDettelbach

 

 

 

Oklahoma: Republican incumbent Mike Hunter will run for his first full term after being appointed in 2017 to take the place of Scott Pruitt, who now heads the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Oklahoma has a Republican triplex.

No Democrats have announced they will run in the June 26 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Oklahoma has not joined either of the lawsuits, which is kind of surprising when you think about it.

Since writing the original post, Democrat Mark Myles has entered the race.

He must have joined pretty recently because his campaign website is a placeholder. See it here: https://www.electmarkmyles.com

 

 

Rhode Island: Democratic incumbent Peter Kilmartin is term-limited out. Rhode Island has a Democratic triplex.

At least one Democrat, Peter Neronha, will run in the September 12 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Rhode Island is one of the 17 states countersuing to defend the ACA. 

Nehrona has not said anything specific about the countersuit but we have no reason to believe he doesn’t support it.

See his website and donate to his campaign: https://peterneronha.com

Follow him on Twitter: @PeterNehrona

 

 

 

South Carolina: Republican incumbent Alan Wilson will run for a third term. South Carolina has a Republican triplex.

No Democrats have announced they will run in the June 12 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: South Carolina is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

Since writing the original post, Democrat Constance Anastopoulo entered the race. She will run unopposed in the primary.

As with many Democratic AG candidates, Anastopoulo has not said anything specific about her state joining the anti-ACA suit, but nothing on her campaign site indicates she’d support it.

See her site and donate to her campaign: https://www.anastopouloforag.com

 

 

South Dakota: Republican incumbent Marty J. Jackley will run for governor instead of a third term as AG. South Dakota has a Republican triplex.

No Democrats have announced they will run in the June 5 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: South Dakota is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA.

South Dakota Democrats will choose between two AG candidates at their June 15-16 convention: Tatewin Means and Randy Seiler.

Right now, both are using Facebook instead of splashing out on campaign sites. Neither has directly addressed the lawsuit, but Seiler did write a health care-themed post of note on June 8:

SD recently expanded coverage of substance abuse to people who qualify for Medicaid. Falls short though in expanding eligibility that could target services to get people the help they need – with the Federal government paying 90% of cost. Note that Republican AG candidate Russell voted no on the expanded coverage for treatment.

See Seiler’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/randyseilerforattorneygeneral

See Means’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/MeansforAG/

 

 

Texas: Republican incumbent Ken Paxton will run for a second term. Texas has a Republican triplex.

At least one Democrat, Justin Nelson, will run in the March 6 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Texas is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA, and is co-leading the effort with Wisconsin’s AG.

Nelson ran alone in the primary.

On June 9, he tweeted:

Here’s the pattern now: Ken Paxton files a lawsuit to make a partisan point and to distract from his own indictment. Trump then uses Paxton’s suit as an excuse. Lather, rinse, repeat. That’s wrong. I believe it’s Texas first, not Tea Party first.

See Nelson’s site and donate to his campaign: https://www.nelsonfortexas.com

Follow him on Twitter: @NelsonforTexas

 

 

 

Vermont: As of January 1, 2018, Democratic incumbent T.J. Donovan has not decided if he’ll run for a second term.

No Democrats have announced they will run in the August 14 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Vermont is one of the 17 states countersuing to defend the ACA. 

Donovan did commit and defeated a Democratic primary challenger to run again.

See his site here and donate to his campaign: http://donovanforvermont.com

Follow him on Twitter: @TJforVermont

 

 

 

Wisconsin: Republican incumbent Brad Schimel will run for a second term.

At least one Democrat, Josh Kaul, will run in the August 14 primary.

 

Update, June 2018: Wisconsin is one of the 20 states suing to destroy the ACA, and is co-leading the effort with Texas’s AG.

The filing deadline passed on June 1, meaning Kaul will run unopposed in the primary. He’s the son of a former AG, Peg Lautenschlager.

On June 8, Kaul tweeted:

‘s effort to allow health-insurance companies to deny coverage to Wisconsinites with pre-existing conditions is wrong. We should be working to expand access to affordable care.

See Kaul’s website and donate to his campaign: https://www.joshkaul.org

Follow him on Twitter: @JoshKaulWI

 

 

Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the page. And tell your friends about the blog!

 

 

See the document that lists the 20 states that are suing to kill the ACA:

https://www.texasattorneygeneral.gov/files/epress/Texas_Wisconsin_et_al_v._U.S._et_al_-_ACA_Complaint_(02-26-18).pdf?cachebuster:23

 

 

Xavier Becerra put out a press release on June 7 that lists all 17 states and entities that are countersuing to defend the ACA:

https://oag.ca.gov/news/press-releases/texas-v-hhs-attorney-general-becerra-leads-coalition-16-attorneys-general

 

 

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https://ballotpedia.org/Main_Page

 

 

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Action Alerts · Call Your Members of Congress · Health Care

Call Your MoCs and Make It Damn Clear You Support the ACA and the 16 State AGs (Plus the District of Columbia) Who Are Countersuing to Defend It

Call your Members of Congress and make it damn clear to all three that you support the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and you support the 16 state attorneys general (plus the District of Columbia) who are countersuing to defend it. 

 

Having failed to get Congress to kill the ACA, the Trump administration is trying a ridiculous, bullshit move. On June 7, the Department of Justice stated it would not defend the law against a suit brought by 20 state attorneys general.

 

To quote from a June 7, 2018 story in the Washington Post:

In a brief filed in a Texas federal court and an accompanying letter to the House and Senate leaders of both parties, the Justice Department agrees in large part with the 20 Republican-led states that brought the suit. They contend that the ACA provision requiring most Americans to carry health insurance soon will no longer be constitutional and that, as a result, consumer insurance protections under the law will not be valid, either.

 

Full story is here:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/trump-administration-wont-defend-aca-in-cases-brought-by-gop-states/2018/06/07/92f56e86-6a9c-11e8-9e38-24e693b38637_story.html?utm_term=.f3b0215d68fe

 

The same night, Topher Spiro, who has done consistently great work with defending the ACA, CHIP, and GOP assaults on health care, tweeted the following:

 

Trump’s Justice Department just refused to defend the ACA and asked a court to invalidate protections for people with pre-existing conditions. Luckily, Democratic states have intervened and will defend the law.

 

This is an open and shut case. It is frivolous, a truly wacko claim. Texas argues that because Congress repealed the individual mandate, the pre-existing condition protections must also go. Congress obviously disagreed.

 

The judge is right-wing and unpredictable. So he could very well strike down the protections. But the circuit court would reverse.

This development is important because 1) Trump is thoroughly politicizing the DOJ and refusing to defend the law of the land and 2) this creates some degree of uncertainty that contributes to GOP sabotage.

Three respected career DOJ attorneys withdrew from the case in protest just before this brief was filed. That tells you how politicized this is. This is a political attack on the ACA and people with pre-existing conditions.

I don’t believe people should worry too much about this court case. Nothing we can do about it anyway. I believe people should worry about repeal if they keep the House. THAT we can do something about.

One thing is clear: Trump made a BIG mistake attacking pre-existing condition protections tonight. He may have awakened a sleeping giant.

Conservative constitutional law scholar (who believed the individual mandate was unconstitutional!) says this latest case is “cynical-squared” and “absurd” =>

…and he cited these two Adler tweets, one a main tweet, one a reply:

The problem with the Trump Administration’s response to the latest ACA suit is not its refusal to defend the mandate so much as its adoption of problematic (and quite cynical) approach to severability.

Then the arguments here are cynical-squared. No matter how one conceives of severability doctrine, the underlying premise here is absurd.

…Back to Topher Spiro. He cited the fact that 16 other state attorneys general, plus the District of Columbia, had filed a countersuit. And while he did state he felt people shouldn’t worry about the court case, he did recommend that folks call their MoCs:

The average number of people with pre-existing conditions is about 300,000 per congressional district. Find your district. Get the number. Hold Republicans accountable.

We agree with him. Even though he’s right, and legal scholars from across the spectrum affirm that the state AGs’ anti-ACA lawsuit is wack (scroll down for a link), we at OTYCD think it’s worth it to call your MoCs and make it completely and utterly clear that You Are Not On Board With This Shit.

Suggested script: “Hello (Senator/House Rep Lastname,) I am (Firstname Lastname of town, zip code). I realize this is a Department of Justice matter at the moment but I wanted to call and make it absolutely clear that I support the Affordable Care Act and I oppose any attempt to undercut it or its key provisions. The lawsuit that was brought by the 20 state attorneys general, and which the DOJ has essentially backed by refusing to enforce the law, is crap. Most legal scholars agree that it’s crap. But if the DOJ does not wise up and do the right thing, there is a chance that the suit will advance, and the protections the ACA grants to people with pre-existing conditions will be threatened.

It’s estimated that at least 52 million non-elderly Americans have pre-existing conditions. If you don’t have one, you love someone who does. We cannot go back to the bad old days when health insurers would only cover you without bankrupting you if you’d never been sick in your life, at all, ever. That would be cruel and insane. And I am putting you on notice: If any representative of mine votes to cripple or kill the ACA, I will work to throw that person out of office. Thank you for listening.”

Follow Topher Spiro on Twitter:

@TopherSpiro

Read a June 8, 2018 Vox piece in which a range of legal scholars smack down the anti-ACA lawsuit that the DOJ is rolling over for:

https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2018/6/8/17441512/obamacare-lawsuit-texas-trump

Read a June 8, 2018 piece from the Washington Post that claims that 52 million Americans younger than 65 have pre-existing conditions and would be hurt if the ACA is destroyed:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2018/06/08/aca-lawsuit-could-jeopardize-52-million-americans-access-to-health-care/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.70f79d9a202b

Read yet another June 8, 2018 piece on California AG Xavier Becerra leading a countersuit to defend the ACA:

California’s Attorney General Vows National Fight To Defend The ACA

Health Care

See If Your State Has Extended The Deadline To Sign Up For Coverage Under The Affordable Care Act in 2018

See if your state has extended the deadline to sign up for health care coverage under the Affordable Care Act in 2018. 

As you know, the Trump administration has done everything it can to hamper and hamstring signups for coverage under the ACA for 2018 via healthcare.gov.

They cut the signup period to just six weeks, from November 1 to December 15, and scheduled computer maintenance on a few Sundays to cut into the viable time even more. And when asked to extend the deadline when it was clear that demand was high, Trump officials refused to do so.

Fortunately, some states have extended the deadline for their own residents.

California’s deadline is January 31, 2018.

Colorado’s deadline is January 12, 2018.

Connecticut’s deadline is December 22, 2017.

The District of Colombia’s deadline is January 31, 2017.

Massachusetts’s deadline is January 23, 2018.

Maryland’s deadline is December 22, 2017.

Minnesota’s deadline is January 14, 2018.

New York state’s deadline is January 31, 2018.

Rhode Island’s deadline is December 31, 2017.

Washington state’s deadline is January 15, 2018.

Also, if you live in Texas, Louisiana, Georgia, or Florida AND you were affected by Hurricane Harvey, you might be able to file as late as December 31, 2017.

See this December 15 Bloomberg piece that goes over the various extended state deadlines, and what’s triggered the extensions:

https://www.bloomberg.com/graphics/health-insurance-marketplaces-for-2018/?cmpid=socialflow-twitter-business&utm_content=politics&utm_campaign=socialflow-organic&utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social&cmpid%3D=socialflow-twitter-politics

Credit also to Peter Morley (@morethanmySLE), who tweeted the deadlines on December 15.

See also a December 16 piece from The Hill about the Trump administration’s refusal to extend the ACA signup deadline:

http://thehill.com/policy/healthcare/365224-trump-officials-decline-to-extend-obamacare-sign-up-deadline

Action Alerts · Health Care · Uncategorized

Spread the Word: Affordable Care Act Sign-Up Season Is On NOW Until Dec 15, 2017

Spread the Word: The open enrollment period for 2018 for the Affordable Care Act lasts from November 1, 2017 to December 15, 2017.

The Trump administration has slashed, and almost eliminated, the promotional budget for ACA enrollment–by some reports, as much as 90 percent. The administration also significantly shortened the enrollment period. It’s part of its ongoing efforts to make the ACA fail.

One way you can support the ACA, also known as Obamacare, is to spread the word about the 2018 enrollment period. It’s unfortunate that it comes to this, but by taking it upon yourself to let people know that now is the time to sign up for the ACA, you can defeat the government’s efforts to cripple and kill the law.

As we prepare this post, the pinned tweets on the landing pages for Spiro and Andy Slavitt were about the enrollment period. Spiro’s includes a pleasing graphic that mentions the need to go to healthcare.gov.

Their Twitter handles are:

@TopherSpiro

@ASlavitt

 

Spiro doesn’t seem to be on Facebook, but Slavitt is. Watch his page for something you can repost on this topic:

https://www.facebook.com/ASlavitt/

 

Please tweet and post this information early and often, throughout the 2018 enrollment period. We at OTYCD will repost this message daily during the short window. If you subscribe to the blog or follow us on Twitter, it will show up more than once (sorry about that).

 

Read about the cuts to the ACA enrollment period promotional budget:

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-08-31/trump-health-department-is-said-to-slash-obamacare-ad-budget

http://money.cnn.com/2017/08/31/news/economy/obamacare-trump-advertising/index.html

Call Your Members of Congress · House Bills, Federal · Read, Educate Yourself, Prepare · Save These Tools · Senate Bills, Federal · Use Your Power, Recruit Friends

Learn When to Call Your Members of Congress a Second Time on the Same Issue

June 2017 Update: It’s the last week of June. The Senate version of the AHCA is out. It’s terrible. Some Republican senators are wavering. Now is the time to call, call, call and tell your senators that you oppose the AHCA.

Call every day this week (June 26-30) but please, only call your own senators.

If you or your family would be hurt by the passage of the AHCA, think hard about whether you are comfortable telling your story. If you can tell it, please do.

Calling is especially urgent if your Republican senators are any of the following people:

 

Susan Collins of Maine

Lisa Murkowski of Alaska

Rob Portman of Ohio

Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia

Cory Gardner of Colorado

Dean Heller of Nevada

Bill Cassidy of Louisiana

Jeff Flake of Arizona

 

Text of the original post follows.

You’ve called your senators and your house rep to oppose the Republican plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA), aka Obamacare. (OTYCD suggested this action on January 5.)

But ACA issues are still making headlines. In the early hours of January 12, the Senate voted 51-48 on an action that would help them bulldoze the law later on. It paves the way for the passage of a reconciliation bill, a type of bill that can’t be filibustered:

Should you call your members of Congress every time the ACA comes under threat?

Usually, the answer is no, you should not call your members of Congress if you have already called to speak your mind on a specific issue.

But there are a few exceptions. If they apply to you, go ahead and call again.

 

You have new information that the member of Congress can freely use. An ACA-related example would be your willingness to share a story about how the ACA’s repeal would hurt you directly and personally, which you did not share when you called the first time.

Important side note: “Free use” means you’re letting your reps talk about your ACA story in public, in their own words, as they see fit, in whatever venue they choose, and on whatever media platform they choose (social media or otherwise). Once you give them your story, you lose control over it.

You are never obliged to share personal medical information in public. And if the ACA story is not about you–if it’s about a spouse, a grown child, a minor child, a friend–you must get that person’s permission before you share it with your reps.

But many members of Congress who are trying to defend the ACA have explicitly called for personal stories from their constituents. Offering yours can help the cause, if it’s your story to tell and you feel comfortable sharing it. (End of side note.)

 

You can call to thank or complain to your members of Congress after a key vote takes place. Some Democratic senators voiced objections during the Jan 12 actions. Two were Ron Wyden of Oregon and Maria Cantwell of Washington. Do they represent you? Then you could call and say thank you–but you should be specific, and cite exactly what they did to merit the thank-you.

Sample thank-you script: “I am (Firstname Lastname) from (town, zipcode). I see that Senator (Lastname) spoke up during the late-night session that ultimately voted to weaken the Affordable Care Act. I thank you for fighting for the law, and I will remember that you did the right thing.”

If you are angry about how your senator behaved during the vote, you could call and complain. But again, be specific. Tell the senator exactly what they did to make you complain.

Sample complaint script: “I am (Firstname Lastname) from (town, zip code). I see that Senator (Lastname) voted for Senate Resolution 3 on January 12. This bill paves the way to cripple, even kill the Affordable Care Act. My family and I depend on the ACA for our health care. I oppose what Senator (Lastname) just did, and I will remember that you did the wrong thing.”

Updated to add on May 21: You can also call multiple times on the same issue if you are joining a campaign that requires daily calls. A good example is the recent effort to ask your MoCs, daily, to pursue an independent investigation of the #TrumpRussia scandal and encourage them to slow or stop the work of Congress until that happened.

Never forget: Do not call anyone who does not represent you. Stick to your two senators and your one house rep.

Also, only call the relevant reps. The January 12 vote took place in the Senate, so you should call your senators, and only your senators; you should not waste time and energy calling your house rep.

And still call if your members of Congress don’t reflect your views. If anything, it’s more important for you to call. If you don’t say something, it’s that much easier for your reps to believe that people who think like you don’t exist.

If you are so delighted, or angered, by the actions of an out-of-state member of Congress  that you must say something, find a street address for their office and mail them a postcard. Alternately, you could leave a message on their Facebook page or tweet at them. But please keep the phone lines free for their own constituents.

 

Bonus resource: Below is a link to Liberal Spirit, an exceptionally useful web page on the topic of contacting your members of Congress. In point 3, the author generally recommends against calling your reps a second time on the same topic.

https://www.liberalspirit.com/dca

 

 

 

Call Your Members of Congress · Community Activism · Health Care · Use Your Power, Recruit Friends

Defend Obamacare (aka the Affordable Care Act)

Important: As of April 30, the House GOP is allegedly close to having enough votes to pass  their terrible health care bill. Please call to support Obamacare and in particular, encourage friends in red states to call their House reps to oppose the bill.

Beating this drum again because the GOP is at it yet again, and we need to push back against it. If you haven’t called to voice your support for Obamacare, aka the Affordable Care Act (ACA), please do. Even if you have, please step up again and make it clear that you want to fix Obamacare, not repeal and replace it. This is extra-important if your rep is a Republican.

This action targets your Congressional delegation–both senators and your house rep. Call and express your support for Obamacare, which is also known as the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

To the Democrats, say that you support them telling the Republicans that the Dems will help the GOP address the flaws in the Affordable Care Act (ACA, aka Obamacare) if and only if they drop their interest in repealing and replacing the law.

Also tell them that if the GOP refuses to let go of ‘repeal and replace’, you want the Dems to step back and let the GOP own the consequences.

To the Republican reps: Tell them that you want the GOP to help fix the ACA, and drop  ‘repeal and replace.’ Tell them that if they vote for ‘repeal and replace,’ you will vote for their opponent the next time they’re up for re-election.

Bonus: Will you be directly affected if the ACA is repealed? Take some time thinking through the facts of your situation, compose them into a short story–three to five sentences–and tell your short story to your reps when you make your calls.

Examples:

My college-age child has a chronic illness (name it if you have your child’s permission and you’re comfortable doing so). Without the ACA’s provision that allows young people to stay on their parents’ health insurance until they are 26, my child could not have gone to college.

I have a pre-existing condition (say what it is if you are comfortable doing so). Before the ACA became law, I could not get insurance at all (or you were quoted a four-figure monthly sum, or whatever the obstacle was–tell them what you experienced). Without it, I will be uninsured again.

The ACA made it possible for me to leave my job and start my own company. If the ACA goes away, I will have to close my company and seek work with a company that can offer me health insurance benefits.

If you are comfortable letting your reps use your ACA story, tell them so, and give them the information they need to do so.