John Lewis is shouting on the House floor: I’ll “fight every day…I oppose this bill with every breath and every bone in my body” pic.twitter.com/RMwKs5JbJ7
— Bradd Jaffy (@BraddJaffy) March 24, 2017
Inevitable fireworks went down on this Capitol Hill Friday after Donald Trump moved to force a vote on the GOP healthcare bill under the threat of leaving Obamacare in place. This morning saw several hours of debate on the House floor with Paul Ryan freaking out and scurrying to speak with Trump at the White House because the votes simply aren’t there to pass this thing. In the meantime, civil rights icon Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) delivered an impassioned speech from the House floor. While Lewis is known for his passionate delivery, he volleyed to stratospheric heights with this shout-filled address.
In doing so, he implored Ryan to pay attention to all of the voices (both Democratic and Republican) who oppose this bill. Yes, he did get loud, and it was breathtaking to witness:
“We can not abandon our principles. Mr. Speaker, we can not forget our values. For too hard, and too long to back down now. I will fight any bill that turns the clock back to a darker time. I will fight every single attempt to turn a deaf ear, a blind eye, and a cold shoulder to the sick, to our seniors, and to working families. Mr. Speaker, I will fight every day, every hour, every minute, and every second. I’ll oppose this bill with every breath, and every bone in my body. We must not give up. We can not. I will not give in not today, not tomorrow, and never ever. On this bill, there is only one option, and that option is to vote no.”
If any one voice can possibly convince Trump and his faithful that the American Healthcare Act, in its current incarnation, would harm millions of American people, it would come from Lewis. Of course, the Trump administration and GOP leaders are stubborn in their intent to push this bill through despite all signs pointing to “no.” Why the rush?
Trumpcare will not only strip healthcare coverage from up to 26 million people over a decade, but it may also drastically limit services that are covered. Paul Ryan has been dreaming of this day for decades, but this may end up being a fatal mistake where his speakership is concerned. Of course, this makes one wonder whether Trump is pulling this whole charade as a power move on Ryan, but we’ll have to see how this plays out.