1st District Congressman Buddy Carter returned to Washington D.C. Friday maybe with his ears still ringing. He’d spent the past five days holding Town Hall meetings throughout the district. On Tuesday in Savannah, he was greeted with hundreds of people, some who could not get inside the meeting and quite a few who did get inside did a good amount of yelling.
“Well, what I wanted to do and tried to do was reassure people it’s going to be okay,” said Carter, ” I was trying to say to them – don’t think we’re pulling the rug out from underneath you because we’re not.”
He’s talking about the Affordable Care Act. Many on Tuesday expressed worries that they will lose health insurance. “Healthcare is very personal and that impacts peoples’ lives directly and they take it very seriously and I get that and I understand that,” the congressman told us.
Still, he remains adamant that the ACA is not the way forward. He says the healthcare law passed under President Obama is unsustainable “First of all, Humana said just two weeks ago that it is pulling out of 11 states and the CEO of Aetna described the Affordable Care Act as being in a death spiral,” Carter told me. “We recognize that if we touch it we own it and we knew that we’ve got to do something for healthcare here in America.”
Still, at least some of his constituents don’t want the law gutted, but saved and improved. Carter says some things will remain such as protections for those with pre-existing conditions. However, he says many other changes are coming. “We’ve got to do something, we’re trying something else and we feel like it can work,” he said.
Still, there’s public frustration because no one stil knows exact details of any new plan. Carter however, promises there will be a transition phase and says the ACA has been shored up for up to two years as part of that.
He told us hearing some yelling this week, he plans more Town Halls in the future. “I’ll be quite honest with you, there was a discussion about us not doing them this time because of everything that’s happened,” Carter told me. “But it’s still my job to represent the 1st district and I’m going to continue to hold these events. We’re even going to try to do better next time and try to schedule them at night so that more people can come.”