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Mr. COLLINS of New York. I want to thank the gentleman for holding this special session tonight.
Mr. Speaker, the American public is often concerned there is not enough agreement in the Halls of Congress. Well, I am pleased to report there is growing agreement among both parties and in both Houses of this Congress that ObamaCare is truly a train wreck, as recently described by Democrat Senator Max Baucus. As this massive piece of legislation is being implemented, the negative impact it is and will have on our economy is becoming clear:
ObamaCare guts the funding for Medicare Advantage to help cover its growing price tag. So, for all those seniors out there, like my 86-year-old mom, who are happy with the coverage they receive through Medicare Advantage, I have news for you: you can't keep your existing plan, as promised, because ObamaCare effectively ends it.
What the administration could not raid from other sources to pay for ObamaCare it makes up in new taxes. Just last week, as chairman of the Small Business Subcommittee on Health and Technology, I heard from small business owners and advocates about the impact the health insurance tax will have on the bottom line of America's small businesses. The amount of that tax will be $8 billion in 2014, increasing to $14.3 billion in 2018, and will increase based on premium trends thereafter.
Supporters of ObamaCare will say these fees are supposed to be paid by the health insurance companies; but common sense, substantiated by independent studies, tells you the insurance companies are passing these costs directly on to consumers in the form of higher premiums. To avoid the taxes and fees, companies are cutting jobs, not hiring, and are reducing employee hours to stay under ObamaCare thresholds, all this at a time when national unemployment remains embarrassingly high.
ObamaCare is built on the premise that the young and the healthy will pay to insure the old and the sick. Well, guess what? The young and the healthy are too smart to have their pockets picked. Knowing they can't be denied coverage down the road, the young and the healthy are going to drop out of the insurance market and instead pay the $95 penalty and their out-of-pocket medical expenses. They know this approach will be far, far cheaper in the end than paying thousands of dollars for an individual or a family plan under ObamaCare. It's like not buying collision insurance on your new car because you know you can get it after you've been in a wreck.
When attempting to defend ObamaCare, its supporters like to tout all those ``free'' things that ObamaCare offers the American people. That sales pitch crystallizes what is wrong with ObamaCare and the tax-and-spend policies this town is famous for. Nothing is free in this world. For every free service ObamaCare offers, someone out there in America is paying for it with his hard-earned money; or, worse yet, we'll just add a few more bucks onto our staggering debt to cover this so-called ``free'' service.
This country can't afford ObamaCare figuratively or literally. ObamaCare must be repealed. It needs to be replaced with commonsense, cost-effective ways to improve health care in this country.
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Mr. COLLINS of Georgia. I appreciate the gentleman yielding to me.
This has been a great time tonight. It is a great time in the sense that we get to stand here and explain to the American people what they were not explained to a few years ago. It's a good time to explain to them what they were sold as being something good and something that was going to help in health care, and remember this bill says ``health care'' in its title. But the truth of the matter is it's not about health care, Mr. Speaker; it's about control. It's about who's going to control health care, who's going to control what our government is getting into and what our government should stay out of.
I fully support voting this week to repeal ObamaCare and moving forward with an agenda that promotes jobs, that creates better opportunities, because you see what is happening tonight, as my good colleagues have stood here: they've talked about the problems with business; they've talked about the problems with taxes; they've talked about the broken promises. My colleague has spoken of the broken promise of keeping your own health care, of it not adding to the debt, all of which are lies, things that are not true that were not talked about on this House floor just a few years ago.
So my problem is let's be honest. Let's talk about what it does do. It begins to make a regulatory framework that is amazing. It wasn't a matter if you read the bill. It didn't matter if you read the bill in 2009 because you wouldn't have known what's in it because at the end of almost every paragraph it would say, oh, by the way, we're going to let this agency promulgate the rules and regulations. You could have read every page and you'd have just known that more bureaucrats were going to tell you what health care was going to be like. Twenty thousand pages of regulations are already on the books, 828 pages in one day. We're paying a lot of folks to do a lot of regulation writing. We're paying a lot of folks to take away the basic rights that we're looking at.
You see, you can make an argument this is not about health care, this is about broadening regulatory authority at HHS and at IRS. Oh, wait, IRS. Any thoughts this week about letting them be the regulators of who's paying and who's not paying in our health care system? Excuse me, we're having trouble dealing with what their job is. We don't need them in health care. We've got bigger problems here.
But when broken promises come about, we have to remember--what has disturbed me the most about this whole debate tonight is we've heard about businesses; we've heard about taxes; we've heard about some broken promises; but what we've not heard about is health care. We've not really heard about health care in a doctor and patient. As a doctor told me the other day, he said, Just let me practice medicine, which is all I want to do.
You see, it's time we talked about health care because this law, instead of helping those who need help, it kicks them off insurance and makes people pay more and does all of the things that it was promised not to do.
Doctors are getting out, and new doctors are not going in. And you know who's lost? I can see it right now. The picture I have in my mind is those waiting in the waiting room waiting to see a doctor who need health care, and this law simply leaves them waiting.
Let's don't do that. Let's repeal this law. Let's get on with the real business of this House.
I appreciate the gentleman yielding me this time.