54th Anniversary of Medicaid and Medicare: Latest Threats

July 30, 2019


New Threats Loom as Medicare and Medicaid Turn 54

Beneficiaries celebrate successful healthcare programs while GOP lawsuit puts coverage and benefits at risk for millions

[COLUMBIA, MO] – Concerned Missourians celebrated the 54th anniversary of Medicaid and Medicare today outside St. Francis House, a Catholic Worker house of hospitality that offers meals, shelter, and community for homeless folks in Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler’s district. Speakers included Steve Jacobs of the St. Francis Catholic Worker House, Eric Scott of Mid-Missouri DSA, and Andrew Hutchinson from Missouri Jobs With Justice who shared stories about how these health insurance programs have improved their lives by providing access to quality, affordable services, discussed the potential impact of the Texas v. United States, a lawsuit to overturn the Affordable Care Act (ACA) on coverage and benefits, and the need to improve on the ACA, Medicaid and Medicare programs, not dismantle them. 

The health coverage of nearly 20 million Americans, including 169,000 Missourians and 24,400 of Rep. Hartzler’s constituents is at stake if attacks to repeal the ACA are successful. Additionally, Missouri would lose out on $1.16 billion in federal health care dollars. Thirty-seven states, including the District of Columbia, recognized the need for access to health care and expanded Medicaid for 17 million people. Missouri is one of 14 states that has refused to fully implement the ACA through expanding eligibility for Medicaid. In Missouri, 219,000 people would be eligible if our legislators expanded Medicaid. 

The Texas lawsuit seeks to overturn the ACA based on changes to the law’s individual mandate in President Trump’s 2017 tax law. Those changes paid for over $300 billion in tax breaks for the wealthy and corporations but also resulted in higher premiums and an increased number of uninsured people. 

“Our current political leaders are taking health care in the wrong direction,” said Eric Scott, Co-Chair Mid-MO DSA. “Instead of strengthening and expanding the nation’s most popular and effective programs, all we have seen in the last two years is attack after attack on health care in Congress, the states, and the courts. Lawmakers need to stop playing political games with Medicaid and Medicare, and instead focus on lowering prescription drug prices for everyone, and making sure everyone has access to affordable health care.”

“Right now, because of Missouri’s incredibly cruel eligibility levels for Medicaid, our homeless neighbors are often left without access to health care coverage. Expanding Medicaid as the ACA intended is the best chance for more of our neighbors to finally get the medical care they need,” said Steve Jacobs, founder of the St. Francis Catholic Worker House. “The Republican lawsuit, which Missouri has signed on to, not only threatens the coverage so many Missourians depend on, but could completely remove hope for homeless Missourians to access affordable health care coverage.”

The Texas v. United States lawsuit follows repeated efforts to repeal the ACA in Congress and President Trump’s 2020 federal proposal to cut over $700 billion out of Medicaid and the ACA as well as $582 billion from Medicare despite polls that continue to show health care is the most important issue to 2020 voters.  Polling also shows strong support for protecting and expanding Medicaid and Medicare and majority support among both Republicans and Democrats for candidates who will lower prescription drug prices. 

“Medicaid and Medicare have improved life for countless families over many generations, have helped support state budgets and health care providers including rural hospitals and clinics and many others,” said Andrew Hutchinson, Mid-Missouri Organizer with Missouri Jobs with Justice. “We should celebrate and invest in these pillars of our healthcare system, not worry about persistent partisan attacks that would take Medicaid and Medicare coverage from millions. It is  time politicians put the healthcare and well-being of constituents first by protecting and expanding Medicaid and Medicare so that we have even more to celebrate next year.”

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Missouri Jobs with Justice is a statewide grassroots coalition building transformative power for social, racial, and economic justice. Our individual and organizational members come together to hold decisionmakers accountable and to build a Missouri where opportunity exists for all regardless of race, identity, income, or immigration status. Follow our work at https://www.facebook.com/MissouriJobsWithJustice/ or www.mojwj.org 


2019 Labor in the Pulpits, on the Bimah, in the Minbar

Sign up now to be a part of the powerful tradition of Labor in the Pulpits, on the Bimah, in the Minbar.

This year faith communities will continue to honor the dignity of all labor and work toward increasing access to affordable health care for all of our Missouri neighbors.

Learn more and join us this Labor Day or any time this fall.


Call for 2019 Ad Book support!

Thank you to all the labor unions, community organizations, congregations, businesses, and Jobs with Justice allies who support our annual ad book!  We are grateful for your continued support and are proud to stand with you in the fight for workers’ rights and economic justice.  Show your support with an ad in our 2019 ad book.

Our annual Missouri Jobs with Justice ad book is our biggest fundraiser of the year – and is a great way to connect with the robust Jobs with Justice communities and allies.

Our ad book includes information about Missouri Jobs with Justice and ads from our supporters that is distributed to more than 110 member organizations representing over 100,000 members, distributed at community events, and published online.

We are currently working on our 2019 Ad Book. To support our important work, buy an ad or contact adbook@mojwj.org

Check out our 2018 edition here: 2018 Jobs with Justice Ad book


Minimum Wage and Ethics Reform under Attack in Jefferson City

In November Missourians came together and voted overwhelmingly to raise our state’s minimum wage, to curtail lobbyist influence in Jefferson City, and to institute a fair, non-partisan redistricting plan for our state legislature.

Now all of these reforms are under attack in the General Assembly. The legislature has already changed Missouri’s Sunshine Law so that it can continue to do our business in secret and bills are moving to exempt some workers from minimum wage protection. Lawmakers are also threatening to undermine the non-partisan redistricting plan that 62% of Missourians approved last year.

We need to make sure that the General Assembly hears and respects the voice of Missouri’s voters.

Use this link to urge your senator to to vote no on SB 10, which is attack on the minimum wage we passed in November.

Continue to follow Missouri Jobs with Justice on Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news about our fight to maintain our 2018 victories.


Amendment 1 & Prop B Passed!

The journey to raise the minimum wage and to clean up Missouri politics became reality on November 6th! Missourians were fed up with politicians being more accountable to special interests and corporations than to working people in this state. It was a long road, but it was all worth it when Amendment 1 and Proposition B passed!

THANK YOU! To everyone who carried a petition, knocked doors, made phone calls, signed a petition, chipped in or talked to their friends and family on behalf of these campaigns, it worked. This was a grassroots effort, with over 1200 people working together. This victory was only made possible by the hard work and dedication of our incredible volunteers.

We won on Prop A in August and now on Prop B and Amendment 1. We are sending a clear message: When we put working families first in Missouri, WE WIN!

Click here to find out more about these initiatives