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    Thousands Gather for Obamacare Rally Outside City Hall

    Obamacare RallyBy Dennis McMillan

    On Sunday, January 15, thousands assembled outside San Francisco City Hall to voice their support for nationwide healthcare and to share concerns about how the Trump administration would affect the American Affordable Care Act (ACA, also known as Obamacare). Similar events were held in Sacramento, Los Angeles and nationwide.

    “At a time when the United States remains the only major country on earth not to guarantee health care to all as a right, the Republicans want to throw nearly 30 million people off of health insurance, make massive cuts to Medicaid and defund Planned Parenthood,” the organizers wrote ahead of the event.

    The crowd was made up of young and old, gay and straight—as seen by leather flags and rainbow flags alike. A huge cloth banner with red writing stated, “If It Ain’t Broke, Don’t ‘Fix’ It!” One demonstrator held a placard, “If you’re so sick that you want to gut the ACA, you need it, my friend!” Many carried printed signs with Martin Luther King’s face and his famous quote: “Of all the forms of inequality, injustice in health care is the most shocking and inhumane.” One of this reporter’s favorites was: “Repeal and Replace Trump!” It took 13 people to hold a very long electrified banner saying: “Protect Improve Expand Medicare for all!” A young girl wore a t-shirt stating, “Dreamers gonna dream!”

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    Standing at a podium with the sign “#Our First Stand” and “Save Health Care,” Representative Pelosi said, “Their plan is to make America sick again!” She also stated the Rev. Martin Luther King’s quote about inequality and health care.

    Mayor Ed Lee said, “A repeal vote [of ACA] will start us down the path to the road of chaos in the insurance markets and declines in coverage.”

    The National Nurses United were out in force, noting the millions of Americans who would not receive healthcare if the ACA, Medicare, and Medi-Cal were repealed. National Nurses United Co-President Deborah Burger said, ” On this day of action, we are standing with our elders, our friends, and family—along with many of our elected representatives—to say no to the Republicans’ disastrous proposals.”

    Supervisors Malia Cohen and Norman Yee and Senator Scott Wiener spoke, among many others. Veteran activist and folksinger Joan Baez changed the lyrics a bit to a well-known protest song to sing: “Ain’t gonna let no ego-maniac turn me around, turn me around, keep on walkin’, keep on talkin’, gonna build ourselves a brand-new world.”

    It was announced that the next San Francisco ACA repeal protest would take place on February 1. Location to be announced.

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