Former United States President Barack Obama broke his silence over Affordable Care Act (ACA) for first time after he left the White House. He reminded his supporters of integrity shown by junior members of Congress and courage it took simply to pass this bill. Obama admitted that those lawmakers who voted for the ACA subsequently lost their seats. He reminded them that those members of Congress stayed true to what President Kennedy has described in his book: the wish to maintain integrity must be stronger than the wish to remain in office. They made the personal sacrifice on the hope that what they have done is right.
ACA and Kennedy
Majority portions of Obama's speech concentrated on the Kennedy legacy. This is as the library will mark 100th anniversary of the president's birth later in May. The former president noted that the Kennedys have always wanted to reform the healthcare system. The most interested among the Kennedy family was deceased Senator Edward Kennedy. The latter died due to brain cancer prior to passage of ACA.
Obama reminded his audience of what may happen to millions of Americans if a repeal is passed. They will lose coverage. He however did not mention the present President Donald Trump by name. He implored Congress persons to demonstrate their political courage even if goes against stated party positions.
The former president spoke at Boston's John F Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum on May 7. The institution gave him the Profiles of Courage award. Caroline Kennedy, the daughter of JFK, and who was also the US Ambassador to Japan, awarded him. She was accompanied by Jack Schlossberg, her son.
The former president said thanks to the selfless action taken by a few Congress members, 20 milion individuals now get to enjoy healthcare for the first time. Obama expressed the hope that the present day members of Congress, independent of party positions, will look at facts and speak truth. These must be done even if such actions go against the positions taken by their respective parties.
Such comments made by Obama came after the House narrowly passed a partial ACA replacement and repeal with a squeaky 217 votes for repeal and 213 against. This fructifies a long promised Republican aim who were against the ACA bill from the time of its inception.
The Profole in Courage prize began to be given in 1989. It was created by The John F. Kennedy Foundation. It is a non-profit entity.