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Mr. TIERNEY. I thank the gentleman.
It was interesting, we just had a hearing in one of the committees here in Congress, and we had four witnesses who were speculating about the fear and the myths and all the things that they hypothesize could be terrible if the Affordable Care Act were to go into effect. And then we had one witness who was the worst nightmare for those people, who was a Massachusetts businessperson with a thousand employees, president of the largest Chamber of Commerce in the country, was a member of the board of directors of one of the larger banks, and was in fact the regional consultant to the Fed
in that area, who said that since Massachusetts accepted the equivalent of the Affordable Care Act, not only his business has done better and his employers have done better and his profits have gone up, but in Massachusetts the economy has done better, more people have been working, less people have been using the emergency room, and more employers are covering their employees. And in fact, that's what it is. The facts certainly outweigh all the speculation and the myth and the fearmongering that we see going on.
There are millions of people who are already taking advantage of the Affordable Care Act. One of those in my district is Terry Palary, whose son is a firefighter who's working towards his paramedic certificate and who has to spend hundreds of hours in an internship that's not paid for. He's 23 years old. He wouldn't have health insurance under his father's plan if this bill the Republicans propose were to go through. And some 3 million other young Americans wouldn't be covered on health insurance plans as well. This is misguided legislation that would end that kind of a benefit.
It would also mean the end of a meaningful consumer protection like the 80/20 provision, where we force insurance companies to actually do something they hadn't been doing: covering health care. Providing health care services instead of paying bonuses. Executive salaries that are through the roof. And advertising and other costs--anything but health care on that. It's estimated that some 12.8 million Americans are going to receive more than $1.1 billion in rebates because of that provision alone.
It would also see, if this bill to repeal passed, 360,000 small businesses would no longer get the business tax credits. They would no longer be able to cover some 2 million employees.
This list goes on and on. We can show you example after example of people who have fallen through the doughnut hole--those seniors--for coverage that are now being protected by the Affordable Care Act. Let's find out what we can do about jobs. Let's stop this 31st attempt to repeal an act that that's not going to be repealed and get the American people back to work.
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