Setting the record straight

Thanks to CBS Chicago for allowing me to set the record straight on my plans to make health care affordable for middle class families.

Most of my career has been in healthcare, but I know these baseless attacks are a sign that my opponent doesn’t want to talk about his record. The truth is that he has voted time and again to jeopardize our health care coverage. Voters in the 14th will not be distracted by a career politician’s attack ads.

How this Campaign Began

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I was working for a Medicaid managed care company in Chicago when I found myself at my opponent’s one and only public event of 2017. During that spring, the Congress took a series of healthcare repeal votes. I was watching the debate closely as a healthcare professional and a woman who was concerned about her own healthcare coverage. During that springtime public event more than a year ago, my opponent made a promise. He promised that he wouldn’t support a bill that didn’t provide affordable coverage options for people with pre-existing conditions. That promise was important to me, and I took him at his word.

Just a few weeks later, he cast one of the deciding votes for the American Healthcare Act, a version of repeal that would have made care unaffordable for those of us with pre-existing conditions.

I was very upset. Not only had he cast a vote that would harm his constituents, but he had broken his word. And I’m not willing to accept that. This community deserves better.

A representative should be transparent and honest about their votes, and make themselves accessible to our community. That’s what I’ve done throughout this campaign and that’s what I vow to do when I’m elected to Congress.

I’ve spent the past year traveling across the seven counties of the 14th District, and the most pressing issue I hear about is the lack of affordable healthcare. I’ve heard from seniors who struggle to pay for their prescription medication and families who have mortgaged their homes to pay for a loved one to go to rehab.

I worked on the Affordable Care Act (ACA): I’ve read the law, I understand it, and I know how to fix what doesn’t work. I propose three central reforms to lower costs:

  • Stabilizing healthcare premiums by properly funding and implementing the ACA’s risk adjustment provisions -- that will bring affordable coverage and greater options to more middle class families;

  • Lowering out-of-pocket costs by adjusting eligibility for tax credits in order to include more middle class families in assistance programs; and

  • Lowering drug prices -- the U.S. government is the nation’s single largest payer for health care, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). We must leverage that strength to negotiate fair prices for the middle class.

Additionally, we must invest in comprehensive mental health care for our communities.

Fixing the ACA will require the Congress to properly fund the program. We have seen a cavalier sabotage of the law by Congressional Republicans. These reckless policies have increased uncertainty and volatility in our healthcare market, to the detriment of the 37,000 hard-working people in the 14th District who have have health insurance through the ACA marketplace. These actions represent politics at its worst.

The reforms I have outlined provide a net savings that create new efficiencies in our healthcare system while incentivizing patients to take advantage of important preventive health care services. Keeping our families healthy is not only the right thing to do––it saves money.

It's On!

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Lauren’s second campaign ad is on air! The ad, “It’s On”, tells the story of how the campaign came to be––with a broken healthcare promise from her Republican opponent in the IL-14 congressional race.

“He stood in front of us and promised to protect healthcare coverage for more than 300,000 people in our community with pre-existing conditions. Just a few weeks later, he cast a vote that would have jeopardized coverage for the people who need it most,” Underwood said. “When my congressman made that promise, I believed him. I believed him because it was personal. I’m a nurse who has taken care of patients with chronic illnesses and I have a pre-existing heart condition myself. I’m running for Congress because this community deserves better.”

Vote September 27th!

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It’s 40 days to Election Day, and voting starts now for most of Illinois’ 14th district.* Lauren wanted to share a message with you.

Lauren is counting on each of her supporters to vote before November 6. We know that life can get in the way if you wait until Election Day to cast your ballot.

That’s why we’ve gathered all the early voting resources you need right here.

  1. Visit our Early Vote Page to determine the best polling place for you -- make sure to check the hours of operation!

  2. Take out your calendar and make a plan to vote. Consider inviting a friend to come along.

  3. Head to the polls and cast your vote for Lauren Underwood.

This is going to be a close election, and we need each of Lauren’s supporters to get to the polls. The absolute best way to ensure we all vote is to get it done early.

Once you’ve taken the steps outlined here, be sure to share this link with your friends and family in the 14th District so they make a plan to vote early too!

*Voting in Lake County begins 10/22/18.

Top Marks from Social Security Activist Jon “Bowzer” Bauman!

Many know Jon “Bowzer” Bauman from his days with musical group Sha Na Na, but Bowzer is also a passionate advocate for Social Security. He delivered his endorsement, along with that of Social Security Works PAC, to a crowd of seniors in Huntley, IL, along with several modified version of his rock n’ roll hits.

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Bauman noted that Hultgren has received a lifetime score of three out of 100 from the Alliance for Retired Americans. “As I sang during 'Born To Hand Jive' in the movie 'Grease:' ‘how low can you go?'" he asked, referring to Hultgren’s rating. Bauman closed the event with a special rendition of Sha Na Na’s “Goodnight Sweetheart.” “Goodnight Randy Hultgren, well, it’s time to go,” he sang, with backing vocals from the crowd. Learn more

The Illinois Federation of Teachers has our back!

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More great news! Lauren Underwood has the support of the Illinois Federation of Teachers.

“Lauren Underwood shares our values and is committed to ensuring that every child gets a great education, from Pre-K through college,” said Dan Montgomery, president of the Illinois Federation of Teachers. “As a nurse, she has spent her life caring for those who need her. That’s what our members do every day across this state in classrooms, cafeterias, school buses, state offices, and more. The IFT is proud to support Lauren Underwood in her bid for Congress.”

Big News: President Obama is With Us!

Team -- we've received some incredible news:

President Obama has endorsed our campaign!

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This is a photo from 2006, when I first met President Obama—he was still a U.S. Senator and I was an intern in his Senate office on Capitol Hill. I went on to use my nursing experience at the federal level to implement the Affordable Care Act and provide quality health care coverage for millions of Americans. I look forward to serving Illinois’s 14th in Congress and fighting to ensure access to affordable health care for all Americans.