Yesterday, Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul hosted a roundtable with Wisconsinites from the Eau Claire area who have been impacted by the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) protections for pre-existing conditions. Over 211,000 Wisconsinites gained access to health care through the ACA and, despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic that has killed more than 120,000 Americans, the Trump Administration is attempting to strip citizens of their access to health care. During the event, Attorney General Kaul announced his endorsement of Joe Biden for President of the United States.

“We need change,” said Attorney General Josh Kaul. “We need leadership that’s going to put the health of Wisconsinites and the American people first and that is concerned about the welfare of the people of our country, not about their [own] political interest. So I’m proud to be here supporting Joe Biden, and I’m proud to be a supporter of keeping the Affordable Care Act.  […] I remember just being amazed that in the midst of the biggest health crisis that we have had in over a century that the Trump Administration wanted to throw the health insurance system into chaos and kick people off their health insurance at a time when the Affordable Care Act is providing a critical role in protecting people.”

“We as a nation are dealing with multiple crises,” said State Representative Jodi Emerson. “Not only are we fighting for racial justice and equality but we are also fighting a health crisis around the world today. COVID-19 has put many issues under the microscope. We can’t stem the tide of a communicable disease if people don’t have access to health care, they won’t go to a doctor if that leads them to bankruptcy or collections. […] When I was young my mom battled cancer several times but I never once remember hearing my mom and dad worry whether she should have surgery or whether she could pay bills because she had great union protected insurance. When I was 28 and diagnosed with an autoimmune disease that I still battle, I remember a doctor once saying, ‘Well we should run those tests because we don’t know what it will do to your insurance coverage in the future.’ And as a mother of two daughters in their twenties, I know that they had coverage under my policy till they were twenty-six. That’s what the ACA does for regular, ordinary people.”

“I was sitting on the Hmong Mutual Association board a few years ago,” said Eau Claire City Council Member Mai Xiong. “As an organization that is very small, we only had six employees and a $300,000 budget so there was no way of affording health care benefits for our employees. So the [ACA] marketplace became accessible for them and helped them get affordable health care so that they could take their kids to the doctor so they can get the care they need.”

“I know I’m sick but every day I get up and I try to better my community and this country,” said Tina Pohlman of La Crosse and President of the APS Foundation of America. “I fight tirelessly for those who Trump and his administration feel [are lesser]. With the assistance I receive, I am able to give back and isn’t that what we want as a community, people who are willing to stand up for one another and back each other stronger? […] I want to wake up and live without fear, I want to go about my life helping others without having to worry that my livelihood would be threatened by a president who promised to stand up for people like me and has broken that promise time and time again. That is why on November 3rd, I will be voting for Joe Biden so that on November 4th, I can wake up and breathe easier without fear and a renewed hope in our country.”

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