Protesters rally outside the Scottsdale office of U.S. Rep. David Schweikert, R-Ariz., on May 10, 2017. People decried the U.S. House’s passage of the American Health Care Act, or “Trumpcare.” David Kadlubowski/azcentral.com
People across the U.S. who are frustrated that the U.S. House of Representatives passed the American Health Care Act are expressing their anger by pretending to drop dead outside their representatives’ offices.
At least 48 “die-in” rallies are scheduled in 21 states this week, according to paybackproject.org, which hosts a schedule of protests for people looking to “pay back” the 217 Republicans in the House who voted for “Trumpcare” on May 4.
Rallies were held in Arizona on Wednesday. They were planned outside the offices of all of the state’s Republican House members as well as Sen. Jeff Flake.
Reapers, skeletons in Scottsdale
More than 100 demonstrators gathered outside Rep. David Schweikert’s office in Scottsdale. He voted for the recent health-care bill along with three other Arizona Republicans: Reps. Trent Franks, Paul Gosar and Martha McSally. Rep. Andy Biggs voted against the bill.
Outside Schweikert’s office, adults and children carried “RIP” signs, wore masks and skeleton costumes in a scene that resembled a zombie apocalypse.
Mike Shelby, 64, a Scottsdale retiree who attended with his dog, said he was fighting to keep the Affordable Care Act in place. He said the government should be moving to providing even more care.
“We are the only industrialized country in the world that does not have universal health care,” Shelby said. He said health care should be for everyone, even those who cannot afford to pay.
“He (Schweikert) voted for the repeal and replace of health care,” Shelby said when asked why he was standing outside the representative’s office.
Shelby said the ACA, also known as “Obamacare,” has its flaws and that it needs to be improved, but the version approved by House Republicans would do more harm to people in need of insurance.
Scottsdale resident Kimberly Dorris, 49, said she’s concerned about the impact of the Republican plan on those like her who have pre-existing conditions. She has Graves’ disease, a condition that affects the thyroid.
“I couldn’t get any coverage,” she said, describing how several companies denied her before she finally found a plan through the ACA exchange.
No representative from Schweikert’s office was present during the protest, and the office had closed by the time the demonstration began.
The birth of the ‘die-in’ rallies
The controversial bill, although a victory for the Trump administration, is a long way from becoming law. It still faces a vote from the U.S. Senate.
Shortly after passing the bill, many members of Congress returned to their home states for a recess. There, constituents angry with their representatives who voted for the bill have greeted them — or plan to — with pop-up graveyards.
More than 100 protesters gathered outside the Scottsdale office of U.S. Rep. David Schweikert, R-Ariz., to protest “Trumpcare” and support the Affordable Care Act on May 10, 2017. Alejandro Barahona/azcentral.com
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