130 Days Later: Gianforte and Daines Show Up for Health Centers Press Conference But Don’t Sponsor the Bill

montanademsNews

Helena—Congress let funding for community health centers (CHC) expire 130 days ago, but neither Congressman Greg Gianforte nor Senator Steve Daines are cosponsoring bipartisan legislation to renew the funding for Montana’s 17 centers.

But of course, that didn’t stop them from showing up at a CHC press conference today to put on a show for the cameras. Daines even sent out a tweet saying, “it is vital we fund the 17 centers throughout our state.”

The two peas in a pod have actively worked to undermine community health centers by trying to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and roll back Medicaid expansion.  They must have forgotten that the ACA created the community health center fund, which is helping provide 1/10th of Montana’s population with basic health care, and that community health centers rely on Medicaid expansion to keep the lights on.

Luckily there is something Gianforte and Daines can do about it, if they want to: they can sign onto bipartisan legislation to reauthorize CHC funding for the next five years. The bill currently has 219 bipartisan cosponsors in the House and 19 bipartisan cosponsors in the Senate, including Montana’s senior Senator, Jon Tester.

If Gianforte and Daines genuinely want to help the 100,000 Montanans a year who are served by Montana’s 17 community health centers, why are they offering empty words at a press conference instead of supporting legislation to solve the problem?

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