Former US President Barack Obama accepted John F. Kennedy Library Foundation’s “Profile in Courage” Award on Sunday May 8 at the John F Kennedy library in Boston which was presented by JFK’s daughter Caroline Kennedy. During the speech that followed, he mostly talked about the legacy of Kennedy and mentioned that Kennedys had always supported health care reform, especially U.S. Democratic Senator Edward Kennedy, the younger brother of John F. Kennedy, who died of brain cancer.
In his speech he praises all lawmakers who have taken bold steps and voted for the bill for the benefits of billions and as a consequence lost their parliamentary seats. Obama has also expressed disappointment for those who have only followed the party’s dogma and not cared for the weak.
In his first political speech after leaving office in January he urges congress to show courage and save Obamacare health bill which will otherwise result in cancellation of 24 million people’s medical care coverage. Leaving out his his successor Donald Trump’s name, who promised to cancel and replace the Obamacare in his presidential campaign, Obama spoke about people who are full of anger towards people who differ from them in religious beliefs and other aspects.
Obama said “It is my fervent hope… that today’s members of Congress, regardless of party, are willing to look at the facts and speak the truth even when it contradicts party positions.”
He also mentioned that helping those who are already rich and powerful need little courage but real courage lies in helping poor and sick who are really in need. ACA, which was approved seven years back, has helped millions who were not covered by health insurance. The law also made it very hard for insurers to deny policies to people with pre-existing conditions thus saving thousands of lives.
After months of negotiations, on May 4, a new bill to withdraw and replace Obamacare has been approved by Congress by a narrow margin, but it has yet to be considered by Senate where the bill will likely go through major changes before it is voted on.
(Writing by Ananya Dutta; Editing by Mohith Agadi)