Funeral March: Koch Addiction is Killing Our Health Care

2017 Jul 06 - 5:30pm-6:30pm - Central Park (72nd and 5th Avenue), New York, NY

Host: Metro New York Health Care for All and Rise and Resist

Participants are asked to wear black, and gather just inside Central Park on the southwest corner of 72nd St. and 5th Avenue in Manhattan by 5:30 p.m. We will then solemnly march to the apartment building nearby where David Koch has his New York City apartment. We will be carrying symbolic body bags, coffins, and money bags to deposit there. Representatives from the various co-sponsoring groups will then each make a brief statement about why they are there.

Please RSVP here to let us know that you are coming, so that we can adequately prepare. We ask that you understand that this march is meant to be solemn, and focused on this issue of dark money in politics and what it means for the future of our health care, and not wide-ranging about anything and everything else related to health care, as worthy as those issues and viewpoints may be. We ask for message discipline for this event.

Background Information

Both the Senate and House bills are as much about dramatically cutting taxes for very rich people and large, well-off health care corporations as they are about health care per se. Both bills propose trading away health care coverage for 22-23 million people, decimating Medicaid as we’ve known it for the past 50 years, weakening/eliminating important consumer protections (particularly for people with pre-existing medical conditions), and eliminating funding for family planning and sexual health services, all for these tax cuts for people and entities that don’t need them.

“Dark Money” campaign donors to members of both the Senate and House majorities who would greatly benefit from these tax cuts are now threatening to withhold any future financial support until Congresses passes a bill to “repeal and replace” the Affordable Care Act as described above. Should such a bill be enacted, millions of US residents will suffer, their health will decline, and people will die.

In response, we are working with several groups to hold a symbolic funeral march to the front door of one of the most prominent of these dark money donors, David Koch, one of the owners of Koch Industries. He and his brother Charles are also prime funders of Americans for Prosperity, an “astroturf” group (as opposed to a real grassroots one) that vigorously opposes all federal health care programs.