CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Protestors gathered in Marion Square Friday afternoon to voice opposition to the American Health Care Act as it heads to the Senate.
A group of approximately 30 held signs on the corner of Calhoun and King streets, led by the grassroots group Indivisible Charleston.
Like the Affordable Care Act, the House bill does make sure people who are sick with preexisting conditions aren't denied insurance coverage. But the new plan also allows states to apply for waivers and charge some patients higher premiums than under Obamacare. To offset expenses, the bill proposes including billions in federal aid for a "high risk" pool of patients.
Meanwhile, the House bill would also end Obamacare's fines on people who don't purchase insurance policies, plus replace federal subsidies for lower-income insurance consumers with tax credits.
Others unaffiliated with Friday's protests shared their concerns over the House's passage of the new bill.
"If I got Cobra through my old company, I'd be paying eight hundred dollars a month,"B.J. D'Elia said. "I joined up with Obamacare in January and my premiums are below one hundred dollars."
D'Elia previously covered White House politics with CBS News. Now he's between jobs and worried about keeping coverage for himself, plus the access to affordable health care for others. Yet, he expects the Senate will require changes before the bill advances further.
"I think the bill the way it is right now probably doesn't have a chance at passage," D'Elia said. "I think they're going to have to make a lot of changes to the bill that's passed in order for the Senate to approve it."
Representative Mark Sanford issued the following statement after voting for the bill: