Scalise RSVPs To President Obama's Invitation To Discuss Government Takeover Of Health Care
Congressman Steve Scalise today sent a letter of acceptance to President Barack Obama's invitation to "come over to the White House and go over line-by-line" of the health care bill.
In a town hall meeting in Raleigh, North Carolina, on July 29, President Barack Obama said, "When we come back in September, I will be available to answer any questions that Members of Congress have. If they want to come over to the White House and go over line-by-line what's going on, I will be happy to do that."
Scalise requests to go over the sections of the bill that he strongly opposes, including a government takeover of health care.
A copy of the letter is as follows.
Friday, July 31, 2009
The Honorable Barack Obama
President of the United States
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington, DC 20502
Dear Mr. President:
This week during your health care town hall meeting in Raleigh, North Carolina, you invited Members of Congress to "come over to the White House and go over line-by-line what's going on." I am writing to respectfully accept your offer.
While I agree that our health care system needs to be reformed, I share the concerns of many Americans who strongly oppose a government takeover of health care. In addition there are many sections in the House bill you support, H.R. 3200, which contradict statements you have made over the last few months giving assurances about protections that would be in place.
I would like to meet with you to review these contradictions in the bill so we can go line-by-line, and hopefully come to agreement on corrections we can make to address those discrepancies. One of the commitments you have made is that people can keep their current health insurance plan if they like it. Unfortunately there are sections of the bill that allow government bureaucrats to de-certify a private insurance plan even if someone likes it.
In addition you have stated many times that families making less than $250,000 will not see their taxes increase, "not one single dime." Unfortunately H.R. 3200 violates this pledge in a number of different places. I would like to go through those sections of the bill to see if we can eliminate those tax increases.
There are many reforms I support that share bipartisan support, like portability of insurance, prohibiting discrimination against pre-existing conditions, pooling by small businesses, and other measures to reduce the cost and make health care more affordable and accessible for all Americans. But we should not destroy the things that make America's medical care the best in the world, all in the name of fixing the problems that exist.
I am confident we can find many areas of agreement if we sit down and go through the bill you support, as well as the bills I have co-sponsored, and try to find some common ground. I look forward to meeting with you to further discuss this important issue of health care reform. Thank you again for your invitation.
Member of Congress