The White House on Thursday published a letter that Brent Brown, a Republican from Wisconsin, wrote to president Barack Obama in June.
Brown, who has voted Republican his entire life, wrote that he had been “very vocal” in his opposition to Obama—especially on healthcare.
That was before he got treatment for a serious autoimmune disease through the Affordable Care Act.
“I am so very sorry,” Brown writes. “Put simply to not take up too much of your time if you are in fact taking the time to read this: I would not be alive without access to care I received due to your law.”
Brown’s letter was released ahead of Obama’s appearance in Milwaukee today to recognize the city for signing up 89,000 people for health coverage through the ACA. The White House also published a more recent message from Brown. “Before the Affordable Care Act, I was unable to pay for an incredibly expensive drug that helps to stabilize my condition,” Brown wrote. Afterward, “I was finally able to receive the quality of care that had eluded me for years.”
Read Brown’s full letter to the president below:
To My President,
I sincerely hope that this reaches you, as far too often praise is hard to come by. Apologies to people who deserve it perhaps even less so.
I did not vote for you. Either time. I have voted Republican for the entirety of my life.
I proudly wore pins and planted banners displaying my Republican loyalty. I was very vocal in my opposition to you–particularly the ACA.
Before I briefly explain my story allow me to first say this: I am so very sorry. I understand written content cannot convey emotions very well–but my level of conviction has me in tears as I write this. I was so very wrong. So very very wrong.
You saved my life. I want that to sink into your ears and mind. My President, you saved my life, and I am eternally grateful.
I have a ‘pre-existing condition’ and so could never purchase health insurance. Only after the ACA came into being could I be covered. Put simply to not take up too much of your time if you are in fact taking the time to read this: I would not be alive without access to care I received due to your law.
So thank you from a dumb young man who thought he knew it all and who said things about you that he now regrets. Thank you for serving me even when I didn’t vote for you.
Thank you for being my President.
Honored to have lived under your leadership and guidance,
Brent Nathan Brown