Students, community members confront Sen. Moran on health care

Sen. Jerry Moran speaks with Kansas State students in Manhattan, Kan. on Sept. 21, 2017. (Photo by Regan Tokos | Collegian Media Group)

Following a surprise visit to campus, a group of students and members of the community confronted Sen. Jerry Moran to start a conversation on health care.

The discussion was focused on the Graham-Cassidy health care bill. The bill is the newest attempt from the Republican party to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.

“As constituents, we expressed our concern about Graham-Cassidy and urged the senator to oppose the bill,” Adam Wilkerson, sophomore in political science, said.

Garrett Wilkinson, senior in nutritional sciences and microbiology, said that a “yes” vote on the bill will be a “critical mistake.”

Wilkerson, Wilkinson and others in the group stationed themselves outside every exit from Cardwell Hall. When Moran exited the building, the group member at that exit notified the rest of the group via group message. The rest of the members then convened on Moran, demanding to have a conversation with the senator.

Moran did not take a strong stance on the bill during the 30-minute conversation.

“I have not taken a position on Graham-Cassidy,” Moran said. “I’ve never seen the words. I’ve not seen the CBO score. I don’t know exactly what it does.”

Wilkinson said he was disappointed by Moran’s lack of a decisive stance against the Graham-Cassidy bill.

“The reason it was such a disappointing conversation is that he didn’t come out and say things like, ‘It’s bad to cut Medicaid, it’s bad to kick 30 million people off their health insurance,'” Wilkinson said. “I’m looking for that force of moral courage within him that I see in most people across Kansas.”

Hey, hi, hello! I’m Rachel Hogan, the copy chief for The Collegian. I’m a senior in journalism from Olathe, Kansas. When I’m not at work in the newsroom, I like to spend my time cuddling with my dog, working as a barista and laughing with my friends.