President Barack Obama vetoed legislation on Friday that would have repealed the Affordable Care Act, as well as effectively defunded Planned Parenthood.
The President chided the Republican-led legislature in a lengthy statement issued with the veto, saying that instead of wasting their energy on repealing the law, Congress should focus more on the nation’s economy.
“Rather than refighting old political battles by once again voting to repeal basic protections that provide security for the middle class, Members of Congress should be working together to grow the economy, strengthen middle-class families, and create new jobs,” Obama said. “Because of the harm this bill would cause to the health and financial security of millions of Americans, it has earned my veto.”
The House of Representatives on Wednesday passed the bill repealing the health care law. The President’s statement notes that Congress has made over 50 attempts to repeal one of the administration’s signature legislative achievements.
Obama said the bill would have increased the number of uninsured Americans by 22 million after 2017 and caused more than 10,000 additional deaths. “This legislation would cost millions of hard-working middle class Americans the security of affordable health coverage they deserve,” the statement read.
The bill goes back to Congress, where the law’s opponents do not have the votes to override the veto.