At 2pm on May 17th, thirteen people gathered in the hallway of the Tioga County Office Building in Owego to protest Tom Reed’s vote for the devastating AHCA. Reed’s staff was supposed to be there; they are supposed to hold office hours in Owego twice a month. I called Reed’s Corning office the week before and confirmed the hours as they are not listed on Reed’s website. The staff wasn’t there; according to a woman who works in the building, they rarely come. Let’s show them Tioga County matters!
Nevertheless, we persisted.
Thirteen people wearing black, carrying tombstones, spoke about how damaging the AHCA is, especially for women, the poor, people with disabilities, and the elderly, and how beneficial it is financially for the rich.
We chanted: “Reed is bad for the 23rd! We will make our voices heard!”; “The rich love Reed! The poor will bleed!”; “TrumpCare is a joke! Either croak or go broke!”; “Tom Reed, care for our health! Not just whether we have wealth!”; “Congress needs to change direction! We determine reelection!”; And “Tom Reed – stands for greed!”
Many people shared their personal stories of serious medical crises that would have been financially devastating without adequate, affordable health insurance. In sharing their pasts, they were speaking for the thousands of future folks who will die each year if the AHCA passes. It was very moving – people’s willingness to share such private information in service to others.
We concluded with a call to action.
The whole thing lasted less than 30 minutes, but it was powerful for those present. If you’d like to see it, click here.
Tom Reed: Tioga County will not tolerate your votes to hurt us. We will rise up!