I believe deeply that every American should have access to quality and affordable healthcare. After promising to protect healthcare for New Jersey families, Congressman Frelinghuysen broke his word and voted for Donald Trump’s repeal bill that takes away coverage and increases costs for almost everyone.

Frelinghuysen’s bill would impose an “age tax” on Americans over 50 – allowing insurance companies to charge them premiums that are five times higher than what others pay for health coverage.

The plan also eliminated protections for the 300,000 people in our district with pre-existing conditions. When reviewing the repeal bill, the American Medical Association concluded that “Americans with pre-existing conditions will be stuck in second-class health care coverage – if they are able to obtain coverage at all.”

In all, the Congressman’s plan would result in more than 469,000 New Jerseyans losing their coverage, including 27,000 in our district.

Healthcare should be a right and not a luxury, and we can do more to bring down costs and make sure every American has access to affordable healthcare coverage.

First, we need to stabilize the healthcare marketplace. Congressman Frelinghuysen and the House Appropriations Committee have had more than seven years to make sure the cost sharing reductions were funded. Now, Congressman Frelinghuysen and President Trump are sabotaging the healthcare marketplace to score political points with their supporters. It is time for Washington to stop playing politics with our health care. We need to roll up our sleeves and start fixing our healthcare system. Let’s allow Medicare to leverage its buying power to negotiate lower drug prices – it works for the VA and it will help bring down costs for our seniors. And instead of the Frelinghuysen Age Tax, let’s find a fiscally responsible way to allow certain individuals older than 55 the option of buying into Medicare.