Thank you, Philly

Among the Monday morning quarterbacking on the 2017 NFL draft, everyone seemed to agree: Philadelphia was the star of the show.

To millions of TV viewers and Twitter followers, sports commentators praised Philadelphia's performance. "Best draft experience ever," ESPN's Trey Wingo said.

So, we wanted to thank those who were responsible: union construction workers, first responders, and city workers, who spent weeks providing a safe and fun event; our Parkway neighbors; corporate and community partners; and Eagles fans. No other backdrop is as iconic, no other fans are as passionate, and nowhere else could there be an outdoor Draft Experience that spanned 25 football fields and accommodated 250,000 people in the middle of a city.

Being a host isn't all fun and games, and, as we plan for future large events, we will work to find ways to minimize those inconveniences. But, know that your partnership is making an immeasurable difference for the 71,000 people who work in Philadelphia's hospitality industry. That was one of the industry's strongest weeks ever, thanks to the Risk Insurance Management Society convention, the NFL draft, and the Penn Relays. That success will encourage future business.

Hospitality is the fourth largest industry in Greater Philadelphia, contributing $12 million annually in wage-tax revenue, alone. That revenue is used to improve our communities through government programs and services. These large events also serve as an introduction to Philadelphia for job creators or would-be residents.

So, thank you again, Philly. Because of you, the City of Brotherly Love and Sisterly Affection shined once again in the national spotlight.

|Mayor Jim Kenney and Julie Coker Graham, president and CEO, Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau

GOP health plan threatens lives

House Republicans, in voting to repeal the Affordable Care Act, did the country a grave injustice by potentially taking away health insurance from millions of Americans by raising premiums for those with preexisting conditions, among others; letting states take away essential health benefits from patients; and stripping the safety net that Medicaid expansion provides to so many ("What prognosis?" Friday). It is why there is a call from Republican governors and prominent national organizations, such as the AARP, American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, American Medical Association, and American Hospital Association, to not proceed with this legislation.

I strongly urge the U.S. Senate to not pass such harmful legislation, as there will literally be lives on the line.

|Steven M. Clayton, Ocean, N.J.,

Medicare for all

The House vote on the so-called health-care bill - really a no-care bill - fulfilled a campaign promise to a minority of Americans who believe that those without the resources to afford overpriced health care deserve to suffer or die.

I do not wish poverty or ill health on anyone. As a physician, and as a human being, I know that the poor and the sick will never be able to pay for themselves. This bill reinforces that, by giving tax cuts to the wealthy and making care for many of the rest of us unavailable or unaffordable. It declares, front and center, that affordable health care for all was never a consideration. It is time for improved Medicare for all.

|Gene Bishop, Philadelphia

Wealthy win; workers will pay

A headline read, "Republicans take a victory lap for passage of a new health-care act." Seriously?

First, it only passed in the House of Representatives and is not yet law. Second, it's a Pyrrhic victory, considering the GOP's 241-194 majority and the bill passed by only four votes. Third, why trumpet passage of a bill that will likely harm the health and welfare of millions of Americans.

It seems the only winners are a very small group of wealthy people who would receive a large tax cut under the bill, to the detriment of working people everywhere.

Are Republicans so naive, myopic, and short-sighted that they think the American people will not see this bill for the sham and fraud that it is. No American's health will be improved, and millions will not be able to afford basic health-insurance coverage. All this just to say that they have fulfilled their mantra of the last seven years to repeal and replace President Barack Obama's Affordable Care Act.

I call it sad and pathetic.

|Ken Derow, Swarthmore

MacArthur fails N.J. citizens

Thank you for your editorial denouncing the House Republicans' American Health Care Act ("Speak out on health bill," Wednesday). Rep. Tom MacArthur's deal with the Freedom Caucus, which will allow states to obtain a waiver so people with preexisting conditions can be charged higher premiums, represents a total lack of concern for all citizens. I live in New Jersey, although not in his district. Even so, it is important that I demonstrate my opposition. I will call MacArthur and will attend his town hall in Willingboro on Wednesday.

|Mary C. Kirk, Haddonfield