PEOPLE NEED BETTER HEALTH CARE; Congressional Record Vol. 163, No. 50
(House of Representatives - March 22, 2017)

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                     PEOPLE NEED BETTER HEALTH CARE

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The Chair recognizes the gentleman from New 
York (Mr. Nadler) for 5 minutes.
  Mr. NADLER. Mr. Speaker, President Trump and Speaker Ryan have said 
that the Affordable Care Act that we have now is a disaster, that it is 
a calamity.
  There are problems with it. For some people in some plans, premiums 
are too high.
  So what do the Republicans want to do?
  Raise the premiums.
  For some people in some plans, deductibles are too high.
  So what do the Republicans want to do?
  Make the deductibles much higher.
  Let's get away from the rhetoric about the Affordable Care Act and 
look at what the Republicans plan to do with the bill that we are going 
to be voting on presumably in the next few days: raise the premiums, 
raise the deductibles.
  They say that you will not be disqualified for preexisting conditions 
and that you will still be able to get insurance, but not if you let 
your coverage lapse in 6 months. If you are laid off from your job and 
you lose your insurance and 6 months later you get insurance, no, you 
are going to have to pay a 30 percent higher premium in order to get 
coverage. So their guarantee is worth nothing.
  What does the bill that we are going to be voting on do?
  This bill would throw 24 million people off of coverage. Twenty four 
million Americans would lose their health care, the security of mind 
that they have now. This bill would destroy about 2 million jobs. This 
bill would force families to pay higher costs, higher premiums, higher 
deductibles.
  The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimates that a 50- or 
60-year-old person making $26,000 and who, under ObamaCare, is paying, 
after the subsidies, out of pocket $1,700 a year for health insurance, 
will, under this new Republican bill, after the appropriate subsidies 
that this bill will give, pay not $1,700, but $14,000 on a pretax 
income of $26,000.
  So this bill will increase costs, throw 24 million people off of 
coverage, and impose an age tax. People above 50 years old will have to 
pay five times as much as younger people for insurance, a very crushing 
age tax.
  Why? Why do this?
  Because they say people need more freedom to choose their health 
care.

  People don't need more freedom to choose their health care. People 
need better health care. They need coverage. They need security. They 
need coverage that will take care of their health needs at a low cost. 
That is what they need.
  The ObamaCare, the existing bill that we have, the Affordable Care 
Act, gives them that, not as well as it should. We should make 
improvements to it. It is not an improvement to throw 24 million people 
off of coverage, increase the cost, and institute a crushing age tax.
  Why?
  It is to give a tax benefit of $2.8 billion to the richest 400 
families in the United States. This bill would be the largest transfer 
of wealth from low- and mostly middle-income people to the top 1 
percent in American history.
  Let me just address one last thing. People are being bribed to vote 
for this bill. People are being bribed legally. Provisions are being 
put in the bill to say: Hey, if you vote for this bill, you will 
benefit, your State will benefit.
  Okay. There is nothing wrong with that. It has been done before.
  Let's take a look at one of those bribes, the so-called New York 
bribe. New York, along with 15 other States, takes advantage or 
utilizes a provision in the law that has been in the law since 1965 in 
Medicaid in which the State share of Medicaid is borne partially by the 
State and partially by local governments. Sixteen States have elected 
to do that.
  This bill says that New York State only will be prohibited from 
sharing the burden of Medicaid with local governments. So $2.3 billion 
will be shifted from various local governments onto the State's 
taxpayers, except for New York City. Upstate counties will lose their 
share. New York City will have to keep it. The State will have to bear 
the burden. So it is a $2.3 billion increase for State taxpayers.
  Now, eight Republicans, we are told, from upstate New York are going 
to vote for this bill just because of that. They don't like the bill in 
other respects, but because of that provision, which will relieve some 
of the burden from local counties, they are going to vote for the bill; 
and they say so. Representative Collins of New York said so. He would 
vote for that bill. He got a number of other people to agree. That is 
why the provision is in the bill.
  Okay. But it is not going to happen. It is flatly unconstitutional. 
They are selling their votes for something that is never going to 
happen, and that is just wrong. This bill should not be approved. It is 
a sellout to the people of the entire country.

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