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Public Statements

Health Care Refrom

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

Health Care Reform

he SPEAKER pro tempore. The Chair recognizes the gentlewoman from Florida (Ms. Ros-Lehtinen) for 5 minutes.

Ms. ROS-LEHTINEN. As we know, health care is not a luxury; it is simply a necessity. And here in the United States we already have the best doctors, the best hospitals, the best patient care in the world. What we do not have is the best access to health care. That access lies in being able to obtain quality health care at a fair price.

All families deserve to know that their health care needs will be met. We need to promote changes that make health care insurance easily accessible and affordable for all Americans. And we need to do this in a way that fixes what is broken in the system without destroying what works in the system.

What we need is real health care reform. Real health care reform means that no one should be denied coverage due to a preexisting health condition. Real health care reform means coverage should be portable and stay with you through job changes or career changes. Real health care reform means that there should be no discrimination based on age or gender. Real health care reform means expanding the health care options for all Americans by forcing insurance companies to compete for all of our business. Real health care reform means supporting effective prevention, wellness, and disease management programs. And, most importantly, real health care reform means all of these things without destroying the current health care system that over 80 percent of Americans have said they are happy with.

The Pelosi health care bill wants to raise taxes on all individuals by 2.5 percent if they do not purchase bureaucrat-approved health insurance. The Pelosi health care bill makes over $162 billion in cuts to Medicare Advantage for seniors. The Pelosi health care bill will eventually force Americans to purchase their coverage through the Federal Government with no real competition. The Pelosi health care bill makes no effort to control the skyrocketing costs of health care or insurance premiums. Instead, the Pelosi health care bill finds convoluted ways to hide health care costs in taxes on individuals, businesses, and by making timely and professional care a scarce resource.

As a mother and as a grandmother, I know that American families are worried. In the average household, it is us women who are often tasked with major and minor health care decisions. We choose our family doctors and take our kids and elderly parents to doctors' appointments. We stay home to nurse the sick children and our partners back to health. And we have seen every scrape, every cut, every blister that our family members have ever had. We know that families are in this together and we bind and look after our families.

Women know that if health care reform excludes even one member of our family, then it is unworkable. And we know the high cost of health care is the most important issue facing our Nation right now, because it is the most important issue facing our families.

Everyone deserves access to health care insurance. Everyone deserves health care treatment. And everyone deserves both at an affordable price.

The Pelosi health care bill is not the answer. We can, and indeed, we must, do better.

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