July 17, 2009
Democrats Reject Common Sense Health Care Amendments
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Earlier this week, Democrat leaders in the U.S. House unveiled health care legislation that would cost Americans over $1.5 trillion, increase taxes, add mandates on small businesses, limit patient choice, and end up raising – not lowering – the price of health care for all Americans. In addition, the Congressional Budget Office has indicated that the cost and structure of this plan would hinder the ability of the economy to recover from the current crisis.
Republican Members of the House Appropriations Committee today offered several amendments to the Fiscal Year 2010 Labor, Health and Human Services Appropriations bill to provide common sense guidance and spending limits to this or any future health care plan. Democrat members of the Committee rejected these responsible and timely amendments, and offered no amendments of their own to rein in the massive costs or otherwise improve their flawed plan.
“We must find a way to make affordable and quality health care available to all Americans. But, cutting the link between the patient and the doctor and allowing health choices to be made by a vast government bureaucracy instead is unacceptable. American families are already bearing the brunt of this recession, and piling on more taxes and more government without improving the cost or quality of our health care system will only serve to make a bad situation worse,” House Appropriations Ranking Republican Jerry Lewis said.
Republican amendments on the Democrat health care proposal included:
· An amendment by Mr. Lewis that would prohibit federal funds for any new government operated health insurance plan or program. The amendment was voted down by Committee Democrats on a vote of 21-37.
· An amendment by Mr. Bonner that would prohibit funds to enforce any new federal health insurance coverage mandate on small businesses. The amendment was voted down by Committee Democrats on a vote of 21-35.
· An amendment by Mr. Tiahrt that would prohibit subsidies for the private health insurance plans held by the President, Vice President and Members of Congress who vote in favor of a new, government-run health insurance plan, should such a plan be enacted into law. The amendment was voted down by Committee Democrats on a vote of 22-33.
In addition, Ranking Member Lewis offered an amendment consisting of 13 amendments, which had been offered to other Appropriations bills and rejected by Democrat leaders for consideration on the House Floor. Lewis offered his amendment in protest of the unprecedented closed rule process directed by Democrat leaders that extinguishes the opportunity for amendments to Appropriations bills on the House Floor.