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Public Statements

Read the Bill and Compare the Two

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

Mr. AL GREEN of Texas. Mr. Speaker, this message is only for persons who may get sick. If you will never get sick, this message is not for you, N-O-T, not for you. Only for those who will get sick.

Mr. Speaker, I hold in my left hand a copy of the Affordable Care Act. I hold in my right hand the replacement bill that my colleagues across the aisle have been talking about.

This bill has passed the Congress of the United States of America. It is more than 2,000 pages. It was condemned for being too long, which may explain the size of this bill. This bill has within it preventive care. This bill has within it a cap on administrative costs. You must spend 80 to 85 percent of the money that insurance companies collect on health care. This bill protects persons who are under 26 years of age, as they can stay on their parents' insurance. This bill covers persons with preexisting conditions.

I had to read this bill. My constituents insisted that I read this bill before voting on it.

And my constituents want me to read this bill. This is the replacement bill, and they want me to be sure that I understand the replacement bill before I vote to repeal.

So what I'd like to do now, for all within the sound of my voice and who are viewing this, I want to read the replacement bill. I shall read the replacement bill. Let me just read half of it first. I shall now read one-half of the replacement bill. Now, I shall read the other half of the replacement bill.

Now, some of you will say, Al, you read too fast; I didn't pick up all of that. So, for those who listen slowly, or those who may have missed it, I shall now read the replacement bill in its entirety. That's the replacement bill.

Here is the bill that we can read. I'm going to ask that I be allowed to place the replacement bill in the Record.

Mr. Speaker, I ask that persons consider the empirical evidence as well as the invisible evidence. When you weigh the empirical evidence against the invisible evidence, you decide whether we should vote to repeal.

Now, there may be some who contend, well, Al, really, I'd just like to go back to the way things were. Let's quickly go back to the way things were. Gladys Knight had a song titled, ``The Way We Were.''

Here is the way we were in 2009. In 2009, when we were considering replacement, we were spending $2.5 trillion a year on health care. That's a big number. Hard to get your mind around it. That's $79,000 a second. It was, at that time, 17.6 percent of the GDP.

We were spending $100 billion a year on persons who were uninsured. It was projected that by 2018 we'd spend $4.4 trillion, which would have been 20.3 percent of GDP, which is $139,000 a second.

In my State of Texas we had 6 million people who were uninsured. In Harris County, where I have my congressional district, we had 1.1 million people who were uninsured. Twenty percent of the State's children were uninsured. Fifty million Americans were uninsured. 45,000 persons per year were dying because of a lack of insurance. That's one person every 12 minutes.

And if you don't like that, call Harvard. I got the statistics from Harvard.

The system was not sustainable. This is why we embarked upon producing this bill.

So I beg that those who insisted that I read this bill before voting, please understand that before you vote, you ought to read this bill and compare the two.

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