Locals ask Congressman Mike Bost to sign pledge to protect healt - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Locals ask Congressman Mike Bost to sign pledge to protect health care

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CARBONDALE -- Across the state, demonstrators showed up to the offices of their congressmen, demanding answers on healthcare face to face. That included the office of Congressman Mike Bost in Carbondale. 

Bost made a quick stop in Union County Monday, but didn't meet with constituents. Tuesday, a coalition of groups planned a statewide day of action.

A local group hoped Bost would be at his office to sign a pledge to what they call "protect healthcare" by not repealing the Affordable Care Act coverage, but they missed him again.

The demonstrators didn't hold back their feelings towards Congressman Bost, as a person dressed up as a chicken stood outside his office with them.

"He seems to make himself unavailable to his constituents," says Mary Ingram, a retiree leader with Illinois Alliance for retired Americans.

The group of a dozen or so unhappy constituents met at his office to urge him to rethink his stance on the Affordable Care Act.

"It has been a life saver for many people in this area," says Ingram.

Ingram says she's not been happy with Bosts vote to repeal the Act. "I really want to tell him that people will be hurting if they do not have access to affordable healthcare."

But, the proposal failed, this time.

"Remember, that's only one of three buckets in the process of making healthcare affordable, portable: deal with pre-existing conditions, bring the rates down and truly have healthcare for everyone," said Representative Bost during an interview in Union County on the matter.

Another problem the group has is Bost not scheduling face-to-face town hall meetings to share their concerns.

"Anytime that somebody sends out on social media a checklist on how to disturb the meeting that's not a meeting at all. That is chaos, therefore I am having tele-town meetings, " responded Bost on that matter.

"What I got out of that is there are a lot of unhappy people here in southern Illinois over some of the votes that he has cast," adds Ingram.

She says a repeal of the ACA would affect many seniors within southern Illinois. She says it would have cost seniors an average $2,000 more per year in Illinois and in southern Illinois that figure was closer to $4,000 more per year.

"I wrote him a letter and asked him about the ACA and his support of it and he told me there's thousands of people that don't have it, but there's millions of people that will lose with this, especially us older people, " says Parasetta Adeniji.

Bost says he is willing to meet with constituents one on one, two on one or even three on one.

"I hope he would agree to meet with his constituents and see the affects of what this has on them," says Ingram.

The demonstrators' pledge had a list of ten items asking Bost to agree to Oppose any plan... that finances tax cuts for the wealthy through cuts to Medicaid, Medicare, or the ACA, privatize Medicare and decrease the overall number of people who have health coverage.

The group left the pledge at Bost's office, hoping he'll eventually sign.

Last month, Bost created an online forum to get feedback regarding the Affordable Care Act.

To learn more about Bost's views on the Affordable Care Act, click here.

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