To AOC, the Squad, Pramila Jayapal, House progressives, Bernie Sanders, and every member of Congress, far too many who ran on Medicare for All are not FIGHTING for it as if our lives depend on it.
That’s why we’re petitioning them to act NOW. We demand that they force Biden to expand Medicare to every American through executive action, leverage their votes and use every legislative tool to pass Medicare for all in Congress, start organizing direct actions for single-payer, and meet with constituents and movement organizers affected by our horrific health system to organize a fearless new campaign for Medicare for all. Add your name to the petition and call on House progressive to fight.
The petition will be delivered to AOC’s district office in the Bronx this Monday, July 26th at 3:00 p.m. where we will gather for a rally and action for Medicare for All. Less than three years ago AOC took direct action at Pelosi’s office to demand a Green New Deal. Now we’re taking direct action at her office to demand that she fight for Medicare for all.
Paula Jean Swearengin and Zeynab Day, who, like many others, worked tirelessly to help elect AOC to Congress, will be speaking at her office. March for Medicare for All National Organizer and AOC constituent Shareef Snuggs, I and others will speak alongside them. Join the action this Monday!
Our action will come on the heels of the March for Medicare for All this Saturday, which numerous organizations and thousands of people have been organizing across the country. Yet, not a single U.S. representative or senator has agreed to speak, backed the demands, or even acknowledged the March. Where are all of these politicians who ran on Medicare for all and co-sponsored the bill when it comes time to act?
As members of Congress, the government guarantees them the best healthcare in the world, $174,000 salaries, and pensions after five years in office. But the rest of us are still suffering. We demand that they fight for Medicare for All like our lives depend on it. Because they do!
That’s why we’re going to AOC’s office to demand that she use her huge influence to fight for Medicare for all. Activists have spent months painstakingly organizing the marches this weekend while AOC could send one tweet to her 12 million followers and thousands would show up at the White House or Congress to demand single-payer.
As we speak, one of my greatest friends at the People’s Party, our National Action Coordinator Phil Ateto, is struggling with multiple myeloma cancer. Thinking that he might have only months to live, his friends and loved ones were overjoyed when a new drug put his cancer in remission 18 months ago. But then earlier this year, his insurance company, CareFirst, cut off the drug claiming that it was not “medically necessary.”
Phil’s cancer came back and he’s been forced to undergo chemotherapy over the last few weeks. Phil is one of the most genuine and selfless human beings that I have ever met, and a cherished member of our People’s Party community. Congressional Progressive Caucus Chair Rep. Jayapal and the Squad had the audacity to host Phil on their Medicare for all House bill launch livestream in March and now refused to fight for him and the millions of others who need single-payer.
So this is personal to me. Deeply personal.
AOC and every member of the Squad campaigned on Medicare for all and a commitment to fight the Democratic Party’s corporate leadership. But since being elected, they’ve turned down every chance they’ve had to meaningfully advance it.
They refused to leverage Pelosi’s speaker vote for a floor vote on Medicare for all. They refused to demand single-payer in the pandemic recovery bill. They took Medicare for all off the negotiating table during the stimulus debate by moving the introduction of the bill from February till March, after the stimulus had passed. They voted for the insurance-giveaway COBRA subsidies instead of demanding health care for all.
They didn’t call out Biden when he abandoned the public option. They said Biden has “exceeded progressives’ expectations” and gets an “A” for ditching all of his already-moderate campaign promises. They pushed lowering the age of Medicare to 60 in the infrastructure bill instead of their own single-payer bill, and even settled for slating it into the reconciliation bill which they know won’t pass. And they have never demanded that Biden use Section 1881A of the Social Security Act to expand Medicare to every American by executive action.
Candidate AOC said that it doesn’t take 100 years to get Medicare for all, it just takes political courage. Candidate AOC said that we have to organize and bring the ruckus to Washington. But now AOC has almost stopped talking about Medicare for all altogether. She tweeted about Medicare for all 40 times before taking office in 2018 but only once since Biden took office. She was elected on the promise to primary corporate Democrats and now she’s donating thousands to their reelection campaigns and protecting them from primary challenges.
Just last year AOC said that “in any other country, Joe Biden and I would not be in the same party.” Later she said “We don’t have a left party in the United States. The Democratic Party is not a left party. The Democratic Party is a center or a center-conservative party… We can’t even get a floor vote on Medicare for all. Not even a floor vote that gets voted down. We can’t even get a vote on it. So this is not a left party.”
She used the Democratic Party’s unwillingness to demand a floor vote on Medicare for all to illustrate that the Democratic Party is not a left party. But then she refused to #ForceTheVote and win a floor vote when she had the chance.
Why are AOC and the Squad even in a corporate-funded and center-conservative party in the first place?
This Saturday Americans will March for Medicare for All in more than 50 cities across the country. Paula Jean Swearengin, who just joined as our national Candidate Engagement Director, will be speaking at the rally in Washington D.C. alongside Marianne Williamson, Lee Camp, Savage Joy, Scott Desnoyers, Laura Fielding, and other friends of the People’s Party.
Our petition and NYC action are calling them to act.
Our demands are:
1) We demand that you call on Biden to declare a pandemic public health emergency and expand Medicare to every American using Section 1881A of the Social Security Act.
2) We demand that you use every legislative tool available to pass Medicare for all in Congress, including withholding and leveraging your votes to demand single-payer as a condition for passing legislation.
3) We demand that you use your huge social media followings, ability to get press, and celebrity to organize direct actions for Medicare for all. Organize and join rallies at the White House and Congress demanding that they give Medicare to all.
4) We demand that you meet with us, your own constituents, people affected by our horrific health care system, and Medicare for all movement organizers, to plan and coordinate the aforementioned actions and a fearless new campaign for single-payer.
Join our National Call at 8:30 pm ET tonight to talk about the March for Medicare for all, our petition to AOC and the Squad, and the action at AOC’s district office in the Bronx. We’ll be joined by Paula Jean Swearengin and San Diego People’s Party Hub Coordinator and #M4M4All organizer Eyde Arndell.
So many of these progressive candidates like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez ran on being activists fighting for change. It’s time for them to leverage that power to help call on the people to come out and pressure Congress to do the right thing for once.
Enough is enough. We’ve waited generations for healthcare, we are not waiting any longer.
Healthcare for all,