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Public Statements

Affordable Healthcare Act

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

Mr. JEFFRIES. Madam Speaker, later on this afternoon, the House will vote for the 37th time to repeal the Affordable Care Act.

The Speaker of the House of Representatives has already been on record saying that the Affordable Care Act is the law of the land. So it's just not clear to me why we are wasting the time and the treasure of the American people on another futile legislative fantasy.

In fact, it's a legislative fantasy that has cost the American people more than $50 million. If, in fact, the Affordable Care Act were to be repealed, it would do even more damage, as independent economists have estimated that a repeal would add to the Federal deficit by more than $100 billion.

It's often been said that the classic definition of ``insanity'' is doing the same thing over and over and over again but somehow expecting a different result.

Barack Obama was elected President in 2008. The Affordable Care Act was signed into law in 2010. The Supreme Court, with the Chief Justice voting in the majority, held that the Affordable Care Act was constitutional in 2012. A few months later, President Barack Obama was reelected in an electoral college landslide. Yet, later on this afternoon, we're voting to repeal the Affordable Care Act for the 37th time--over and over and over again. It's a classic definition of legislative insanity, as if the 37th vote is going to be any different, will yield any different results than the previous 36 where we've wasted the taxpayer dollars of the American people.

The Affordable Care Act is the law of the land, and that's a good thing. It's a good thing because over the next decade more than 30 million Americans who otherwise would not have had health care insurance will be insured. It seems to me that that's a good thing.

The Affordable Care Act makes sure that insurance companies cannot deny medical coverage for preexisting conditions. It seems to me that that's a good thing.

The Affordable Care Act provides small businesses with a 35 percent tax credit, which will enable these small businesses to continue to grow and to flourish. It seems to me that that's a good thing.

The Affordable Care Act allows young Americans who are just starting out to remain on the insurance plan of their parents until the age of 26, giving them a real chance to get themselves started in their pursuit of the American Dream. I'm new, but it seems to me that that's a good thing.

Yet later on this afternoon, for the 37th time, we're engaging in another futile legislative fantasy.

There are a couple of other things that we could be doing. We could be dealing with the sequester, $85 billion in random cuts that are costing the economy more than 500,000 jobs, but we're not.

We could be debating the American Jobs Act, trying to put the people of this great country back to work and stimulate the economy, but we're not.

We could be trying to get a budget, go to conference, create some certainty for industry and the American people, but we're not.

Madam Speaker, I'm hopeful that after this vote is taken, we can finally come to the reality that the Affordable Care Act is the law of the land, it's good for the American people, and we should get back to doing things that will advance prosperity in this great country.


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