Published: April 21, 2017
AP(Eye) on the Hill is our weekly highlight of significant federal updates, particularly those that impact AAPI communities regarding reproductive, immigration, and economic justice. Learn about NAPAWF’s and other national AAPI groups’ federal policy work while you’re out on the ground!
- Conservative Republicans continue efforts to repeal ACA despite failure earlier this month
- CAPAC Members mark Vaisakhi, the Sikh New Year
- Trump faces backlash as comments increase tensions between the U.S. and North Korea
- Trump issues executive order on H-1B visas, “high-skilled” immigration visas issues by the Department of Homeland Security
- #HandsOffMyBC, fighting to protect access to contraception!
- Progressive activists hold tax marches around the nation
Conservative Republicans continue efforts to repeal ACA despite failure earlier this month
On Wednesday, Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) continued to push forward efforts by Republican leaders to repeal the Affordable Care Act. Republicans attempted to pass the American Health Care Act (AHCA) earlier in the month—but did not have enough votes from Republican leadership, who continue to face significant backlash from constituents during recess. After what was been coined a “failure,” Ryan conceded ACA as the “law of the land.” Only a few weeks later, Republican representatives are still pushing for a repeal bill once again. A new repeal vote could come as early as next week, according to Rep. Tom MacArthur (R-NJ).
- Read about the Center for American Progress' assessment of how the revised ACA repeal plan would drive up premiums for people with pre-existing conditions.
- The Chicago Tribune published an op-ed on how the repeal plan would negatively impact “older and rural residents, small businesses, and women.”
- Women of color break it down: “The House Republican Repeal Bill Threatens Reproductive Justice for Women of Color” (NAPAWF, In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda, National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health, and National Partnership for Women and Families)
CAPAC Members mark Vaisakhi, the Sikh New Year
Photo Credit wownow
April 14th marked the beginning of the Sikh New Year, Vaisakhi, when the global Sikh community celebrates the beginning of spring and the religious New Year. Members of CAPAC released statements in honor of Vaisakhi, such as Rep. Ami Bera (D-CA), who said, “As people around the world celebrate the creation of Khalsa and the harvest festival, I am proud to mark the gains made this year by the Sikh community. Happy Vaisakhi!”
Trump faces backlash as comments increase tensions between the U.S. and North Korea
Read Rep. Ted Lieu’s (D-CA) statement on escalating tensions with North Korea here.
Tensions build as the North Korean government escalates threats toward the U.S. government. Additionally, media outlets are calling out President Trump for falsely implying that a U.S. military front was headed towards North Korea, but was in fact headed towards Australia. Trump’s continued mishandling of international affairs and insistence on a more threatening relationship with North Korea has many political advisors concerned.
Trump issues executive order on H-1B visas, “high-skilled” immigration visas issues by the Department of Homeland Security
Photo Credit: SpotLife Asia
On April 18, Trump signed “Buy American and Hire American,” an executive order targeted primarily at H-1B visas. H-1B visas are issues by DHS and allow “highly skilled workers,” often workers in the technology industry. It’s unclear whether Trump intends to change the H-1B program to be more “business-friendly” by changing the lottery system, or to limit visas to block immigrants from “from South Asia and East Asia” as his advisor Steve Bannon has suggested.
#HandsOffMyBC, fighting to protect access to contraception!
On April 19th, NAPAWF joined reproductive rights allies on Twitter to push out accurate information about birth control and access to reproductive healthcare. This was in response to continued efforts by Congress to threaten reproductive health care, including no-cost birth control.
- Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Tom Price is an outspoken opponent of the birth control benefits expanded under the Affordable Care Act.
- Follow #HandsOffMyBC and @NAPAWF on Twitter for more information!
Progressive activists hold tax marches around the nation
Photo Credit: Mike Maguire
Trump is the first President in 40 years to not release his tax returns. On April 15, people in more than 100 cities held marches across the United States to demand Donald Trump release his tax returns. Trump has been followed by calls to release his tax returns throughout the 2016 election and his first 100 days in office.
- Check out what happened at the DC tax march!
- Learn more from Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) and Jamie Raskin (D-MD).
Keep an AP(Eye) out for...
- South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT) will convene in Washington, DC from April 21-24 for their 2017 Summit. Register for the Summit here!
- Join the #100DaysRJ Twitter Chat with NAPAWF and our allies NLIRH and In Our Own Voice on April 28th!