BREAK IN TRANSCRIPT
Mr. KIND. I thank the gentleman for yielding me this time.
Madam Speaker, shortly after passage of the Affordable Care Act, a young mother in my congressional district, Beth Ferstl, wrote me a letter, and she wrote it on behalf of her 13-month-old son Henry. In it she wrote: ``My son had a stroke before he was even born. He wanted to personally thank you for passing this historic health care bill, but he's only 13 months old; and between juggling neurologists, OT, PT and speech therapy, he hasn't found the time. Let me be his voice. As a voter, as your constituent, as a mother, thank you.''
I contacted Beth to find out what her family's situation was in this particular case. She told me that because little Henry had a stroke before he was born, literally by the time he took his first breath in life, he was uninsurable because he had a preexisting condition.
Now, I've been to Iraq four times, I've been to Afghanistan twice, I've met with our troops in the field. I thought I met the bravest people in the whole world, our men and women in uniform who are laying their lives on the line every day for us to better secure and make safe our Nation. But if my Republican colleagues can move forward on this repeal today and look into the eyes of little Henry Ferstl and not only say to him, not only do we have the ability to do something to help you but chose not to, but today we choose to take it away from you, then you guys have got to be the bravest people in the world because I can't do that. No one should be able to do that to the 20 million children that have preexisting conditions throughout this country that this bill fixed.
A young man, 21 years old, in Black River Falls came up to me after the vote and thanked me. I asked him why, is there something in particular that he was most concerned about in this bill? He said, Yeah. A couple of years ago my younger brother needed a kidney so I donated him one of mine. Because I did, even though I am perfectly healthy today, every insurance company I've contacted is treating me as if I have a preexisting condition and they will not insure me.
We can do better than that. That is what the Affordable Care Act is all about, to address these injustices. I encourage my colleagues to vote ``no'' on repeal.
BREAK IN TRANSCRIPT