News

If the GOP would only give up on repeal and replace it could actually make healthcare more affordable

by Editorial Board

09.12.17   Time is rapidly running out before health insurers have to commit to the policies and premiums they'll offer next year to roughly 20 million Americans not covered by an employer-sponsored health plan. Although those premiums are expected to jump 10% or more in many states, Congress can rein in that increase significantly - if it acts quickly. Doing so, however, will require Senate Republicans to stop flirting with yet another partisan proposal to "repeal and replace" the Affordable Care Act, and… Continue Reading


Give them the money! Democrats ask Trump to unfreeze Obamacare's cash for sign-up helpers

by Dan Mangan

09.12.17   A group of 31 Democratic members of Congress asked Trump administration health officials Tuesday to unfreeze millions of dollars in grants for a program that gives Obamacare customers hands-on help signing up for health insurance. The letter from the House members came four days after a news story detailed how the administration had "quietly stopped funding for the outreach" effort known as the Navigator program. And it comes less than two months before the Nov. 1 start of open enrollment … Continue Reading


Don’t Suspend Students. Empathize.

by David L. Kirp

09.02.17   To his teachers at Ridgeway High School in Memphis, Jason Okonofua was a handful. During class, his mind drifted and he would lose the thread of the lesson. He slouched at his desk and dozed off. His teachers seemed to take it personally, as a sign of disrespect. He earned detention and was suspended several times. Jason wasn't trying to rile his teachers. He wasn't paying attention in class because his thoughts were being consumed by his friends' misfortunes - one had just been arrested, anot… Continue Reading


Policy Priority: Improving Access To Healthy Foods In Schools

by Rep. Bobby Scott

08.31.17   Bobby Scott is the U.S. Representative for Virginia's 3rd congressional district. Our work to reauthorize federal child nutrition programs presents a great opportunity to continue improving the way America's children eat, expand their access to nutritious meals, and end child hunger in our country. We are never going to make progress on these goals by walking away from successful public policies that benefit vulnerable students or by rolling back evidence-based healthy meal standards that we kno… Continue Reading


Congressional Democrats press DeVos, Sessions on affirmative action policies

by Michael Stratford

08.21.17   The top Democrats on the congressional education and judiciary committees say they're concerned about the Trump administration's possible efforts to target university affirmative action policies - and want more information about where the Education and Justice departments stand on the issue. The lawmakers write today in a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos that they have "serious outstanding concerns about the Trump Administration's intention regarding … Continue Reading


Democrats Press Trump Administration on Plans for Affirmative Action

by Alyson Klein

08.21.17   Top Democrats in Congress on education and justice issues want answers on just how the Trump administration is planning to proceed when it comes to race-based college admissions. Reps. Bobby Scott, D-Va., and John Conyers, D-Mich., along with Senators Patty Murray, D-Wash., and Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., sent a letter to both U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos and Attorney General Jeff Sessions asking for more information on how their departments plan to approach "cases and matters involv… Continue Reading


Democrats press Justice Department on higher ed affirmative action policy

by Sean Higgins

08.21.17   Congressional Democrats pressed the Trump administration for answers Monday regarding any shift in policy on affirmative action and higher education, reacting to reports that the Justice and Education departments may expand investigations into discriminatory admissions policies at universities to include ones that harm white applicants. The letter, jointly signed by Reps. Bobby Scott of Virginia, Hakeem Jeffries of New York, John Conyers of Michigan, and Sens. Patty Murray of Washington and Dia… Continue Reading


How the current minimum wage hurts kids

by Aoarna Jonnal

08.02.17   This month school resumes for many kids. I remember spending those bittersweet late summer days gathering school supplies and clothes. My family couldn't afford luxury items, but we always had what we needed. Many of my classmates fared very differently. I was regularly asked for paper, pencils and lunch money by kids for whom these essentials were luxuries. The kids from the poorer neighborhoods struggled through a myriad of obstacles that effectively guaranteed academic failure. They came to … Continue Reading


DeVos drops plan to overhaul student loan servicing

by Michael Stratford

08.01.17   Education Secretary Betsy DeVos on Tuesday abandoned her plan to overhaul how the federal government collects payments from the nation's more than 42 million student loan borrowers after it faced growing resistance from congressional Republicans and Democrats. The Trump administration announced that it was scrapping plans to award a massive contract to a single company to manage the monthly payments of all student loan borrowers, and said it would come up with a new proposal aimed at improving … Continue Reading


Trump could sabotage health care. What California should do to protect its residents.

by The Editorial Board

07.31.17   Now that the Obamacare repeal has crashed and burned in the U.S. Senate, this is what would happen if we had a president who knew how to govern and a Congress that could work together: There would be a bipartisan summit to come up with ways to fix and strengthen the Affordable Care Act to slow rising premiums and create more competition in California and across the country. Unfortunately for all of us, that's not what we have in Washington, D.C. Instead, President Donald Trump declared that h… Continue Reading


Trump's threat to cut Obamacare funding could cause Iowa premiums to spike even more

by Tony Leys

07.31.17   Iowans who buy their own health insurance could face even bigger premium increases next year if President Donald Trump follows through with a threat to cut off a major stream of Obamacare assistance, the state's sole remaining carrier said Monday. Iowa's health-insurance market is already teetering, with just one carrier planning to sell individual policies here next year. That carrier, Medica, has proposed raising Iowa premiums by 43 percent in order to keep up with fast-rising costs of caring… Continue Reading


‘Millennial Bill’ Could Help At-Risk Youth Secure Jobs

by Donna Owens

07.29.17   WASHINGTON - Taj Jackson dreamed of college after graduating from a Maryland high school in 2014, but didn't think his family-headed by a single mother who worked multiple jobs-could afford it. Then they both learned about a national nonprofit called `Year Up.' It provides young adults in urban communities with skills training, work experience, educational opportunities and mentoring, aimed at helping them achieve professional careers within a year. "We learned soft skills like email etiquette… Continue Reading


Senate Republicans Don't Know What Health Care Bill They're About To Vote For. That's Nuts.

by Jeffrey Young

07.24.17   The long, halting slog toward Obamacare repeal is set to reach a significant milestone Tuesday, when the Senate is scheduled to vote on ... something. No, not "something terrific," as President Donald Trump promised on the campaign trail. Just ... something. The American public will find out what that something is at about the same time as the Republican senators who Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) wants to amble down to the well of the Senate, raise their index fingers and say, "Ye… Continue Reading


Dublin 6-year-old weighs in on DC’s health care battle

by Jessica Wehrman

07.17.17   Lobbyists for the health care bill are everywhere on Capitol Hill these days. On Wednesday, one of the littlest lobbyists - 6-year-old Noble Lett of Dublin - had his say. 00:19 / 00:36 Dispatch - Daily Highlights Noble, a first-grader at Olde Sawmill Elementary School, was born with Prader-Willi Syndrome, a genetic disorder that can cause a host of medical and developmental issues. But bec… Continue Reading


Iowa family fights for Medicaid for daughter

by Vanessa Miller

07.16.17   On the same day U.S. senators plan to release a revised version of their proposed health care bill, one Iowa family and physician will make their case to lawmakers - through the eyes of a little girl - for threatened Medicaid funding. Center Point residents Kevin and Heidi Schmidt, along with their nine-year-old, Ellie, on Thursday are scheduled to meet with Iowa Sens. Joni Ernst and Chuck Grassley and U.S. Rep. Rod Blum as part of a national push to address pediatric health care needs through … Continue Reading


Medicaid cuts are a matter of life or death for people with disabilities

by Asim Dietrich

07.13.17   Like thousands of Arizonans, I am a person with a disability. I was born with muscular dystrophy, I use a power wheelchair for mobility, and a ventilator to breathe. I am dependent on caregivers. Even with such a severe disability, I live a full life. I am an attorney who works on behalf of others with disabilities, I am a board member at a local disability advocacy organization called Ability 360, and I have an active social life. The only reason I am able to have such a full life is Medic… Continue Reading


GF man with cerebral palsy: 'I would have nothing' without ACA insurance

by Andrew Haffner

07.13.17   Anthony Arnold, 40, has a UND Fighting Sioux tattoo and a power wheelchair that costs more than some cars. Arnold has cerebral palsy, a condition he was born with and which has greatly limited his physical development. He speaks with the help of a communication device attached to his chair and, on Thursday evening, used his keyboard to read a speech he'd written for a rally against the ongoing GOP campaign to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, a move Arnold and the others gathered … Continue Reading


Newton teen has beaten odds thanks to help GOP may end

by Lindsay Kalter

07.13.17   Newton teen Tom Geraci was born four months premature, weighing in at 1 lb., 5 oz. with legs the size of his mother's pinky fingers. Yesterday - 14 years later - Tom met with lawmakers in D.C. to try to save the Medicaid coverage that helped hold his fragile body together, coverage that could be threatened if the GOP health care bill passes. "I'm hoping to make America great again for kids," Tom said. "We want to make America's kids have great health care again." Tom, who is legally blind an… Continue Reading


11-year-old from South Carolina lobbies for Medicaid on Capitol Hill

by Caitlin Byrd

07.13.17   Tymia McCullough showed up on the steps of the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday morning wearing her Miss South Carolina pre-teen tiara and sash. The crown gives her superpowers, she said. Having her mom speak first, though, gives her courage. The 11-year-old from Georgetown went to Washington this week to do what many people far older than her have done: Lobby Congress. Between meetings with South Carolina lawmakers, Tymia turned to her mother. "Mom," she asked, "if I keep talking to all these cong… Continue Reading


This boy’s care costs up to $15,000 a month. Will the GOP’s health plan cover it?

by Barbara Anderson

07.12.17   James McLelland sits at the kitchen counter, a pile of plastic dinosaur bones spread in front of him, and chooses a saber tooth tiger - missing a tooth - to dip in a gooey substance. It's messy, but a good activity to keep James, 6, busy while his mother, Jenny McLelland of Clovis, talks about the Senate health care bill that she worries could upend a system that helps keep her son alive. James has a rare form of dwarfism that is identified by three multisyllable medical words. The genetic dis… Continue Reading

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