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Instructing Certain Committees to Report Legislation Replacing the Job-Killing Health Care Law

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. WOODALL. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Madam Speaker, I have been a Member of this body for 2 weeks and 2 days, and I could not be prouder to be on the House floor today in support of the chairman's resolution. For the entire last year in my district we have been focused on one thing and one thing only, since March of 2010, and that is the repeal of the President's health care bill.

You know, before March of 2010 my district cared about health care reform. We talked about tort reform, we talked about putting patients back in charge of decisions. We talked about ending the tax preference that businesses get so that we can purchase insurance on our own and own those policies as we do our other insurance policies. But the moment this bill was signed into law, the moment the President's bill was signed into law that discussion stopped and the repeal discussion began. And with the repeal yesterday, we now begin anew the discussion of how properly to reform the system. And I am anxious to have that discussion.

You know, we learned a lot in our time in the minority. One of those things we learned is that bringing simple, straightforward resolutions to the floor is better for the process. It's better for the American people. The Speaker has made that commitment. We continue that commitment today with these instructions to go back to the drawing board and bring things forward one at a time.

Now, I sat through 10 hours of hearings in the Rules Committee, where folks came forward and said go ahead and repeal the bill, but save this one provision. Let's have this one provision stay. Go ahead and repeal the bill, but keep this other one provision. We now have that opportunity. We have now repealed the bill here in the House, and we have the opportunity to bring those provisions forward one by one.

And I will tell you what, I am not going to like all those provisions. And some of those provisions are going to pass the House. And that's the way it ought to be. You shouldn't have a one-size-fits-all, take-it-or-leave-it kind of system. You ought to be able to have that discussion on both sides of the aisle. And I have no doubt that provisions are going to come forth from our committees that I am going to vote ``no'' on, but my colleagues on the left and on the right are both going to vote ``yes'' on, and it's going to pass. And that's the way the process ought to be, one provision at a time, one idea at a time. Tort reform, insurance reform, putting patients back in charge of those decisions, putting doctors back in charge of those relationships.

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Mr. WOODALL. Thank you for yielding, Mr. Chairman.

Madam Speaker, I return to the well because I wonder if folks have the same small business people in their district that I have in my district. I wonder if folks are doing the same listening in their district that I'm doing in my district. We are here today to respond to exactly what folks have been asking for.

Now to give credit where credit is due, last year before the last Congress expired, Democrats and Republicans came together to extend for 1 year, and I would have liked to have seen it extended longer, but to extend for 1 year the tax cuts that our small business men and women were demanding. But the second part of the indecision that was there in the small business community, of the anxiety that was there, the uncertainty that was there, is what's going to happen with my health care cost. What's going to happen with the health care plan? Now we have not solved that. We have not solved that anxiety. We have not solved that indecision, because we've only gotten one-half of it done. We've gotten it passed in the House, but we've still got to take it to the Senate and we've still got to take it to the White House.

Now again, in the spirit of giving credit where credit is due, I told folks throughout my campaign that I thought the President identified exactly the right two health care challenges, rising costs and access, and then came up with exactly the wrong solutions to those problems. Now we talk about what's going to happen to folks when the doughnut hole change goes away. Well, did we have a chance last year? And I'm new to Congress. Did we have a chance in the last Congress to vote on that standalone doughnut hole closure? I don't believe we did. Did we have a chance in the last Congress to vote on a standalone preexisting conditions solution? I don't believe we did. Did we have a chance in the last Congress to talk about kids under the age of 26 and what they can do? We did not. But what we do, we have this resolution today that is going to give us, for the first time, the opportunity as a nation to vote on those provisions one by one, because the only option Congress had last time under Democratic leadership to vote for a doughnut hole solution, to vote for preexisting condition solutions, to vote for insurance for kids under the age of 26, was to do it with the unconstitutional mandate, a trillion dollars in new spending, and hundreds of new bureaucracies.

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Mr. WOODALL. I thank the chairman.

Madam Speaker, I would just say to my friend that I absolutely voted no on every single one of those Rules Committee amendments in the name of repealing the bill yesterday, and now today I have returned to speak in favor of this resolution so that you can work with the committee leadership to bring each and every one of those provisions to this floor for a vote again for the very first time. For the very first time. I'm glad to support you in having that opportunity and I'm pleased to be here in support of this resolution today.

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