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CNN: McGovern, Democrats Slam GOP Move to Steamroll Trumpcare

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WASHINGTON, D.C., March 24, 2017 | comments
U.S. Congressman Jim McGovern (D-MA), the top Democrat at today’s early morning Rules Committee meeting, criticized House Republicans for voting just hours ago to steamroll consideration of the American Health Care Act without a full accounting of the costs or hearings on the impact it would have on millions of Americans. On CNN New Day this morning, Congressman McGovern’s sharp words for Republicans were featured. Click Here For Video.

“Good morning, everyone. Or maybe just ‘morning.’ There’s not much good about this morning. For those who haven’t been following every twist and turn of this drama, let me recap. We’re here at the crack of dawn to report out a rule on a healthcare bill that will push 24 million people off their health insurance. A bill that we’ll be voting on in a matter of hours. We only got the text of the latest backroom deal late last night.

“Somehow the Republicans have managed to leave 24 million Americans out in the cold – not one more person covered than in their original bill – while spending $187 billion more than in the last bill thanks to the tax cuts for the wealthy. Every time you come out of a backroom, this bill gets worse!

“I shudder to think what the CBO might say about this latest assault on Americans’ Essential Health Benefits. Unfortunately, we won’t have the chance to find out before casting our votes.

“I am truly, deeply disturbed by what we’re doing here this morning. It is irresponsible, and it is going to hurt the Americans we were sent here to represent.”

Full Text of Congressman McGovern’s Opening Statement:

“Good morning, everyone. Or maybe just ‘morning.’ There’s not much good about this morning. For those who haven’t been following every twist and turn of this drama, let me recap. We’re here at the crack of dawn to report out a rule on a healthcare bill that will push 24 million people off their health insurance. A bill that we’ll be voting on in a matter of hours.

“As if that wasn’t enough, this rule will rewrite the bill to make it far worse. How much worse? It’s hard to say. We only got the text of the latest backroom deal late last night. We’ve barely had time to read it ourselves, let alone hear from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office on what the impacts might be.

“We were given no information from you all about what the final product of this disastrous process would look like until late last night. We haven’t got a clue how many people might be hurt by the latest version of this bill. I’m not one to mince words, as you all know, but even I don’t have the ability to express my outrage here.

“We do know that this bill will take away health care from 24 million hard-working Americans. We know it forces families to pay higher premiums and deductibles, increasing out-of-pocket costs. We know it’s a crushing age tax, forcing Americans aged 50-64 to pay premiums five times higher than what others pay for health coverage, no matter how healthy they are. And we know it steals from Medicare, shortening the life of the Medicare Trust Fund by 3 years and ransacking funds that seniors depend on to get the long-term care they need.

“We also know that this backroom deal will kill the requirement for insurance companies to offer Essential Health Benefits – benefits such as emergency services, maternity care, mental health care, substance addition treatment, pediatric services, prescription drugs, and many other basic, essential health care services. These are called Essential Health Benefits for a reason.

“Again, we don’t even know how many people this plan will hurt.

“We also don’t know what the cost will be. And we can’t know those things until we get an analysis from the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, which, of course, we won’t have before we have to vote on this reckless legislation.

“We only just got the CBO estimate for the original four manager’s amendments last night, and the verdict was grim. Somehow the Republicans have managed to leave 24 million Americans out in the cold – not one more person covered than in their original bill – while spending $187 billion more than in the last bill thanks to the tax cuts for the wealthy. Every time you come out of a backroom, this bill gets worse! I shudder to think what the CBO might say about this latest assault on Americans’ Essential Health Benefits. Unfortunately, we won’t have the chance to find out before casting our votes.

“I am truly, deeply disturbed by what we’re doing here this morning. It is irresponsible, and it is going to hurt the Americans we were sent here to represent.”

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