House Republican Leader John Boehne Weekly Republican Address 10/31/09 VIDEO FULL TEXT TRANSCRIPT
I’m House Republican Leader John Boehner. At the beginning of this year, I told President Obama and Speaker Nancy Pelosi that Republicans would be ready to work with them whenever possible to address the nation’s biggest challenges.
I also said that where there are differences, it was our obligation as a party to explain to the American people how we would do things better. And on the "stimulus," the budget, the energy bill and healthcare, we have done exactly that.
As a matter of fact, only Republicans have offered solutions to lower healthcare costs and make it easier to obtain quality, affordable coverage without imposing a massive burden on the American people.
We first released our healthcare plan in June, and over the last six months, we have introduced at least eight bills that, taken together, would implement this blueprint.
You can go right now to healthcare.gop.gov and get all the details, but for now, I just want to share with you four ideas Republicans have proposed:
Number 1: Let families and businesses buy health insurance across state lines.
Number 2: Allow individuals, small businesses and trade associations to pool together and acquire health insurance at lower prices, the same way large corporations and labor unions do today.
Number 3: Give states the tools to create their own innovative reforms that lower healthcare costs; and
Number 4: End junk lawsuits that contribute to higher healthcare costs by increasing the number of tests and procedures that physicians sometimes order not because they think it's good medicine, but because they are afraid of being sued.
These are four smart, fiscally responsible reforms that we can implement today to lower costs and expand access at a price our nation can afford. Again, you can learn more about these and all the healthcare initiatives Republicans have supported by visiting healthcare.gop.gov.
The best way to get a sense of what Speaker Pelosi’s takeover of healthcare looks like is to
...actually look at it. Just shy of 2,000 pages, it runs more than 620 pages longer than the government-run plan Hillary Clinton proposed in 1993.
This 1,990 pages of bureaucracy will centralize healthcare decision-making in Washington, D.C. It’ll require thousands of new federal employees. It’ll put unelected boards, bureaus and commissions in charge of who gets access to what drug and what potentially life-saving treatment.
And it won’t come cheap. Speaker Pelosi’s healthcare bill will raise the cost of Americans’ health insurance premiums; it will kill jobs with tax hikes and new mandates; and it will cut seniors’ Medicare benefits.
We now have a choice: We can come together to implement smart, fiscally responsible reforms to improve Americans’ healthcare, or we can recklessly pursue this government takeover that creates far more problems than it solves.
It’s clear where the American people stand on this issue. They‘re frustrated and fed up. The "stimulus" bill isn’t working. Unemployment is rising. The debt to be paid by our kids and grandkids is exploding. And now, Speaker Pelosi’s 1,990-page government takeover of healthcare?
Enough is enough. Breaking the bank and taking away the freedoms Americans cherish is not the answer to the challenges we face.
This coming week, Republicans will continue to stand on principle, defend freedom, and fight for our better solutions to make healthcare more affordable and accessible for American families. Thank you for listening. ###