Congressman Ted Deutch released the following statement after the House of Representatives passed a repeal of the Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act:
"The majority of Americans want Congress to work on creating jobs, but the Republican majority in Congress has demanded we spend the opening weeks of the 112th Congress on the political spectacle of repealing health care reform.
"A repeal of the Affordable Care Act would have a devastating impact on Florida's economy. Our state has the second-highest rate of uninsured Americans in the country. For the past decade, our businesses, workers, and families have been squeezed by premium hikes from health insurance companies, growing the rolls of our uninsured from 3.1 million people in 2000 to 4.1 million in 2009. The Affordable Care Act is putting the brakes on these skyrocketing premiums this year by requiring insurers to run more efficiently or reimburse their customers for unjustifiable hikes in 2012. This year, thousands of small businesses in Florida are taking advantage of tax breaks that make covering their employees possible for the first time.
"A blanket repeal of health care reform would leave the 20,000 seniors in my district who face astronomical prescription drug bills out of luck. This repeal would kick 83,000 young Floridians off their parents' insurance plans, cause more financial hardship and heartbreak for parents who have children with pre-existing conditions, and hike co-pays on 3.2 million Medicare beneficiaries in Florida when they go get a simple check-up.
"During today's debate, I saw many of my Republican colleagues praise aspects of the Affordable Care Act -- such as improving access to primary care doctors under Medicare -- and then advocate we start from scratch. I, too, see room for improvements to the health care law passed last year, and I would welcome the opportunity to amend it. However, a total repeal of a law that is working for millions of Americans suggests that the Republican leadership is more interested in political theater than genuine collaboration and compromise."