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২০ ফেব্রুয়ারী ২০১৮, মঙ্গলবার      
An Amazing Experience: HEARING SENATE HEARING ON প্রিন্ট কর
Wahed Hossaini   
বৃহস্পতিবার, ০৫ অক্টোবর ২০১৭

Graham-Cassidy-Heller-Johnson Bill

Thursday Sept.28, 2017. My wife Arzina and I, as members of the AARP Capitol Hill Strike Force were invited by the AARP to attend the Senate Finance Committee Hearing on Graham-Cassidy bill on Monday Sept. 25. The bill was supposed to “repeal and replace Obama care”. You all know what happened to the bill. It was killed. The more aggressive participants from Planned Parent hood, Pre-Existing conditions members, Disabled persons, Cancer Society etc. etc. were loud and chanted, “Kill the bill not us”, “save the health care”.  Over 200 were arrested. We the AARP people were told to be gentle and calm and respond to questions if asked. We were too far from the “real actions” to take reasonably good picture.

We arrived at the AARP HQ on E Street NW about noon. We were greeted with light lunch and coached by the AARP VP Campaign, VP Lobby, and high Officials of the Lobby and Campaign groups. We were told to be nice, gentle but be strong on our objective of opposing the bill. Our chanting slogan was “Enough is Enough”.  Those of us, who did not have the red AARP shirt, were given a red T-Shirt or a sweater to identify us as AARP people. We arrived at the Dirksen Senate Office Building around 1:30 PM for the 2:00 clock Hearing. The building is named after one of the Senate Minority leaders, Sen. Everret Dirksen Republican from Illinois. The hallways were jammed packed. The Capitol Police made a small passage for the Senators to walk to the Hearing room. We were lucky, the AARP arranged seating in the hearing room for us. While standing in line to enter into the hearing room, we met all kinds of people from different parts of the country. A disabled person from Ohio presented Arzina a button “Medicaid saves lives”.

As soon as the Hearing started, loud chanting started “Kill the bill Not us”. Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch used his gavel again and again, but could not control the crowd. He declared the hearing recess for indefinite period and left the room with his committee members. The Capitol Police came into action. Carried some of the protesters out, arrested 200 plus people. We were too far to take any picture of the actions. After about 15 minutes, the hearing started again.

The Chair who brought up the Bill was calm, gentle and invited the sponsor of the Bill, Lindsey Graham to introduce his proposal. Graham spoke as if the bill would end the entire ill in American Health Care system. His cosponsor Sen. Cassidy spoke as if, the fund in this bill will do away all the anxieties of Americans in the entire country. But when the Ranking member of the Committee Wyden of Oregon and Sen. Hirono of Hawaii spoke, it became clear that the bill does not meet American people’s desire nor their need. When the sponsors’ are asked question, they did not answer the question but spoke some thing else. You all know what happened to the bill.    

The SENATE leaders decided not to bring the bill to “Repeal and Replace Obama care” (for the time being) for vote. Senator Graham said later, “I am ‘confident’ that the bill will come up again, during this congress and will pass.”
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