House Republican Leader John Boehner gave the Republican radio address today, and in 568 words made a simple and compelling case for what is wrong with the Democrats' 1,990-page health care proposal -- and for what should be done instead.
"This 1,990 pages of bureaucracy will centralize health care decision making in Washington, DC," Boehner said. "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."
"The best way to get a sense of what Speaker Pelosi's takeover of health care looks like is to actually look at it," Boehner continued. "Just shy of 2,000 pages, it runs more than 620 pages longer than the government-run plan Hillary Clinton proposed in 1993."
Boehner then offered four proposals to improve the health care situation in America -- not a universal fix, but four significant improvements:
No doubt the White House and Democrats in Congress will continue to insist that Republicans "have no plan." But Boehner's four proposals are contained in fleshed-out legislative form in several GOP reform bills. They really exist. You can check them out.
Of course, Republicans have been saying this for months, and few have listened. But there is the possibility that House Democrats, by unveiling a plan even more gargantuan than some supporters expected, have finally pushed too far; the giant stack of paper that is the printed version of the 1,990-page bill is a physical representation of what Republican critics have long branded a massive government takeover of health care.
Here is the full text of Boehner's radio address:
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 health care, we have done exactly that.
As a matter of fact, only Republicans have offered solutions to lower health care costs and make it easier to obtain quality, affordable coverage without imposing a massive burden on the American people.
We first released our health care 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 one: let families and businesses buy health insurance across state lines;
Number two: 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 three: give states the tools to create their own innovative reforms that lower health care costs; and
Number four: end junk lawsuits that contribute to higher health care 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 health care initiatives Republicans have supported by visiting healthcare.gop.gov.
The best way to get a sense of what Speaker Pelosi's takeover of health care 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 health care decision making in Washington, DC. 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 health care 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' health care 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 health care.
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 health care more affordable and accessible for American families.
Thanks for listening.
NOTE: To view this Radio Address, click here.