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Sen. Maggie Hassan gives her maiden address on the U.S. Senate floor, on March 15, 2017

Mar 15, 2017 11:05 PM

Hassan targets Trumpcare in maiden Senate address

NH1.COM

CONCORD – Democratic Sen. Maggie Hassan used her first official speech on the floor of the U.S. Senate to highlight New Hampshire’s acute heroin and opioid epidemic.

The freshman Democrat also used her address to highlight the negative impact she says the Republican plan to repeal and replace the federal health care law, best known as Obamacare, will have on the Granite State’s efforts to combat the drug crisis.

“I am extremely concerned about the effect that legislation introduced by House Republicans last week – also known as Trumpcare – would have on our efforts to combat substance misuse,” Hassan said on Wednesday afternoon.

Hassan said the bill by House GOP leadership, officially known as the American Health Care Act, would phase out Medicaid Expansion, which is the outlet for much of the federal funding for battling the substance misuse epidemic.

“Repealing Medicaid expansion and capping traditional Medicaid would severely hurt the ability of those on the front lines to save lives and combat this deadly epidemic. Substance use disorder treatment providers have been clear that if Medicaid expansion is repealed, they will have to significantly cut back on the help that they can provide to those in need. To pull the rug out from millions of people across the country who are seeking a lifeline from the throes of addiction is unconscionable. And we cannot let that happen,” the senator argued.

Hassan touted that she’s working “on additional legislation that would help combat this substance misuse crisis.”

She highlighted that she’s teaming up with other senators on two different pieces of legislation that would crack down on synthetic drugs that are feeding the crisis, and a third bill that would set up permanent funding to expand substance misuse treatment.

WATCH the entire speech here

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