Please take 2 minutes to save the Affordable Care Act

November 20, 2016
House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wisc., listens as Treasury Secretary Jack Lew defends President Barack Obama's new budget proposals, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Feb. 3, 2015. Rep. Ryan, who agrees with Obama on extending the earned income tax credit to more workers without children, says he hopes that lawmakers and the administration could agree on ways to finance expanding the EITC. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wisc., listens as Treasury Secretary Jack Lew defends President Barack Obama’s new budget proposals, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Feb. 3, 2015. (Photo credit: AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

The Affordable Care Act — a hallmark legislation of the Obama administration’s legacy — helped give provide healthcare coverage for over 20 million Americans. The ACA has given access for 4.3 million AAPI to access preventative care, and has helped tens of thousands of AAPI who had been denied healthcare due to a preexisting condition get coverage. Over a hundred thousand uninsured AAPI youth now are covered by their parents’ plan, and 2.5 million AAPI women now have coverage for women’s health services.

The Affordable Care Act has been an unqualified boon for American public health. And yet, Congressional Republicans are eyeing the recent presidential election of Donald Trump as an opportunity to gut the program.

There are many ways we must organize to protect the Affordable Care Act. One thing we can do is to participate in a ‘survey’ conducted by Speaker Paul Ryan’s office to express our support for the ACA.

The survey takes exactly two minutes to take part in. Those with social anxiety can take heart knowing that it is done entirely through automated phone messaging. Taking part requires almost no time, and it is one tangible thing that you can do to help save the Affordable Care Act.

Here’s how to participate:

  1. Call Speaker Ryan’s office line at (202) 225-0600. You can do this at any time, even after hours. Even right now. The phone will not ring; you will get silence until the automated message kicks in. It may take a few seconds or up to a minute for the phone to ‘pick up’ with the menu of options to be heard.
  2. Press 2 to choose the option to participate in a phone survey about the Affordable Care Act.
  3. Listen to the super-long, super-biased message about how the Affordable Care Act is terrible. The whole message is about 30 seconds to 1 minute long. When it is done, press 1 to indicate that you support the Affordable Care Act.
  4. Wait for an acknowledgement message, and then hang up or stay on the line to leave a voice mail message (which you may not be able to do if the inbox is full).

Now, a quick note: I don’t know to what extent this survey’s results will be publicized by Speaker Ryan, particularly if they don’t yield the results Republicans are hoping for. This survey is clearly biased; it uses push-poll tactics to try and discourage ACA supporters from registering their support.

But that is all the more reason to flood Speaker Ryan’s office with calls. He, like all Republicans, must hear how important the Affordable Care Act has been for middle-class Americans. He must know how the Affordable Care Act has literally saved lives, and that we will work to defend the program.

It only takes two minutes of your time to try and help stop this effort to end the Affordable Care Act. Please take that time to do this.

Update: I’ve received scattered reports that the phone number doesn’t work. I’ve just rechecked — it does work, but some callers receive busy signals when they call. Other callers have had to wait up to a minute for the automated system to ‘pick up’. If you don’t immediately hear anything when you call, wait a minute or two for the message to play back. If you get a busy signal or otherwise don’t get the message even after waiting, try calling back. The number does work, but the system appears to be having periodic issues (hopefully because of the huge number of people calling in to express their support of the Affordable Care Act).

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