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tv   Senators Thune and Stabenow on Republican Affordable Care Act Replacement...  CSPAN  June 27, 2017 8:40pm-8:58pm EDT

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and the medicaid side. for all of those reasons we need to come up with a solution. the american people elected us to do that and we are working hard to get there. >> why did the president say mean? do you think its mean? [inaudible conversations] a number of senators came to the senate floor following the announcement that a vote on the health care bill has been delayed. coming up we will hear from republican senator john vin and i'm a grad debbie stabenow. mr. president i would like to read a few headlines from the past couple of weeks. this is from the "detroit free press".
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this is from the "associated press." new mexico health insurer proposes 80% premium height from the "washington examiner," cms, 47 counties won't have obamacare coverage in 2018. from bloomberg, and then to leave obamacare markets in indiana and wisconsin could from the washington free begin, last insurer in delaware request a rate hike of 33.6% for 2018. mr. president these headlines should probably be shocking. and 80% premium increase, 47 w counties without an insurer thas they are not. insurers leaving the market huge premium hikes last of coverage
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is par for the course for obamacare. unfortunately mr. president to too many americans have gotten used to those headlines. i have watched counts of how may times i've read more headlines. while these headlines may not bv shocking anymore they are stilld disturbing. behind these stories are tens of thousands of struggling americans, americans who can no longer afford their obamacare premiums. americans who are losing their health care plans again. americans who are worried they won't have any coverage at all in 2018. mr. president obamacare may have been well-intentioned but good intentions are not enough. b obamacare was fatally flawed from the beginning and it isngs rapidly imploding. we can do one of two things here mr. president. we can just wait around for the exchanges to collapse completely as our colleagues across the aisle are inclined to do or we
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can ask to sitting around waiting for the exchanges to collapse can't do much good for the american people if we are sitting on the bench and watching the republicans promised the american people burdens of obamacare and wero intend to keep that promise. last week senate republicans release legislation to start undoing the damage caused by obamacare for its called better care reconciliation act prince to start with our bill provides relief for individuals and in cares burdensome individual employer mandates. under our legislation americans would no longer be forced to buy insurance if they don't want or can't afford and employers would no longer be faced with the choice of reducing worker hours are not hiring more employees simply to avoid the federal government's heavy hand.ea our bill also repeals obamacare
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taxes. taxes have consequences and when you raise taxes on everything from lifesaving medical devices like pacemakers to health insurance itself which obamacare did and no surprise these things get less affordable. our goal is to present is to make health care more affordable and more accessible for all americans. repealing obamacare taxes is one part of that. stabilizing the rapidlyba collapsing obamacare market is another part. premiums on the exchanges are spiraling out of control and insurers are fleeing theabilize marketplace. the better care act will help stabilize the market and check premium increases. the better care act provides funding to make health care more affordable for low-income and high-risk residents. giving states flexibility was an important priority for us in
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drafting the better care act. obamacare took the opposite approach attempting to impose a one-size-fits-all solution on every state in the union. the problem with that is as pretty much impossible for a massive federal bureaucracy to hand out one conference of solution that will somehow meet thef needs of everyone in this country not to mention the top-down one-size-fits-all solutions that are seldom the most efficient or affordable. bureaucracy costs money after all. my goal in drafting the better care act is to make sure the states have the flexibility to address the needs of their specific populations that we met provide an and innovation fund to help them meet the particular needs of their residents. we also empower states by simplifying the waiver process by which they can seek relief from some of obama cares demands by allowing them to encourage a
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greater variety of health care solutions.we give we give states more flexibility when it comes to meeting the needs of their residents who rely on medicaid. in addition to giving states the flexibility to design affordable health care solutions and to encourage innovation our billec also provides help direct the two americans who are the most in need. the better care act provides refundable tax credits to americans making from zero to three and a 50% of the federal poverty level. the credits are adjusted to ensure those in the most need get the most help. among other things these credits will provide help to low-income americans around the country who currently receive no health cary assistance. in many states thousands of americans are unable to qualify for medicaid but don't earn enough to get obamacarewhen it subsidies. sadly these families with no assistance when it comes to
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purchasing health insurance. the better care act fixes this. "the wall street journal" reports on that quote the senate bill would extend eligibility for premium subsidies to about two .6 million more adults with income below the federal poverty line according to estimates from the kaiser family foundation. i mr. president since obamacare became law i have heard from so many south dakota and struggling under the law's mandates and a massive help care costs that it has imposed. this bill is going to bring them relief. no more obamacare mandate. protection for those with pre-existing conditions. more affordable premiums, a more stable insurance market, assistance for low-incometribute families, more flexibility to contribute to health savings
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accounts, increased flexibility were states to meet the needs of their medicaid populations, more funding for hospitals that provide care to low-income south dakotans, relief from obamacare taxes and for the first time ev, ever 37,000 south dakotans living below 100% of the federal poverty level will have assistance in getting health insurance on the individual market. this bill will give south dakotans and all americansh access to better and more affordable health care. mr. president the better care act and collaboration among the members of our congress and i'm particularly grateful to senators alexander enzi and hatch have helped provide outstanding leadership throughout this process. mr. president i said earlier republicans made the american people a promise.ro we promised that if we would
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provide relief to the millions of americans suffering under obamacare and mr. president this bill delivers on that promise.ot i hope we will have the opportunity soon to vote for this legislation because it is time to give the american people access to real health care t reform. mr. president i yield the floor and i suggest the absence of a bookworm. >> i just want to take a moment because we have all been so focused and there has been so much concern about what is going to happen in terms of health care in this country and so many people have called me concernede about whether or not they will be able to continue their cancer treatments or whether their child is going to be able to get the app reason that they need oo whether their mom with alzheimer's is going to be able to continue to get nursing home
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care and so on. i want to thank everyone who has told their story. t we have spent six months on this debate. this fight isn't over yet but it started the day after we were all sworn in this chamber in january on january 4, a process that was set up intentionally to be a partisan process that took just 51 votes and instead of the regular committee process and working together a pass was initiated and great concern when out across the country about what would the happening in terms of health care. people have spoken up. they have written letters and e-mails and made phonecalls and marched and told their story and today at least for a moment the senate will not receive this
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week because there are not the roads to proceed or for what i believe is a complete unraveling of our health care system. that may come. i don't underestimate people's ability to make deals and to create a way to have this happew when we get back from the 4th of july but at least in a short while and i want to thank everybody who has been involved in spoken out about thisss a critically important issue. there are lots of things that have been said on this floor and have been said publicly about the health care system. we do have a situation for people buying private insurance on the private exchanges where there is a combination of things that have been done to create a situation where people areor paying more but there are also situations where there are problems and not enoughreas w we people came to march.e
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we need to address that is. one of the biggest cost drivers of the cost of prescription drugs and we desperately need ta address that. i hope that when we come back after this next weekend the 4th of july that we will have a conversation about the modelth that we need to address to build on health care not take away medical care for tens of millions of people but to build on successes and tackle the things that are not working. i'm very concerned about small businesses. i've introduced a bill that would give a 50% tax cut or small businesses with 50 or fewer employees to help them cover the cost of their employees. we know that most people who don't have insurance work for small business or work for themselves as a single employer. let's help them. they are things i know that we could work on together across the aisle that would lower costs
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and tackle the real problems. this is what i also know and that is when people talk to me about lowering costs and addressing health care they are not talking about another tax cut for multimillionaires or billionaires. that's not on their list for health care reform.is send the bill that is in front of us but when someone says tot me i want to bring down our pocket cost so i can afford insurance for kids and by the way we should give another tax cut to multi-legionnaires. y that's not on the list. if we could come together and take the two things off the table here, tax cuts funded by the second thing which isrs cutting medical care for seniors and children in medicaid and families. we could take that off the focus and focus on real problems that need to be addressed so that health care is more affordable
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then we would see enthusiasm on our side of the aisle. i know both sides without could come together. presiding the president who is presiding today and i have worked together many many times on issues. we can do this again but we have a situation where some hot tax cuts get involved in every debate and secondly addressing medicaid which is actually saving money for taxpayers is part of this in a way that makes no sense.tr i've said it before but to illustrate it one more time ourr governor and the state legislature expanded medicaid and work in families, people making minimum wage and what has happened as a result of back? well 97% of the children and michigan can see a doctor and what is that men's? that man's they have half the
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number of people walking into the union merchant to room who can't pay. and then guess what happens magically? the state of michigan is saving money. $432 million more in the budget, taxpayer money savings that can be used for something else important in the state other than paying for people who don't have insurance can't see a doctor and use the emergency room. so for me this debate comes together with all kinds of things that benefit each other. the truth is medicaid is saving money, more people can go to the doctor get prevention and fewer people walking into the st emergency room which is the most expensive way to get health care. o that is working. seniors, three out of five seniors in michigan in nursing
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homes are there because of medicaid health care. i'm not interested in cuttingrs health care for seniors and children and working families. i'm not interested in tax cut that's going to get the top 400 people in the united states a combined $33 billion in tax cuts but if we want to focus on small businesses folks that are individually buying insurance and they either can't find insurance for its too high, count me in. count me in. that needs to get fixed and that involves making sure that the administration does not continue with actions that are raising people's costs on purpose and it means we need to fix the things in the system that are working their. i would hope that the rest of
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this week, next week and beyond that we can have some real conversations about how to work together to solve real problems that deal with costs, prescription drug costs, out-of-pocket costs for people and we can do that in a bipartisan way if we are t focusing on the real problem in health care and how we make health care stronger, better, more affordable for american families. thank you mr. president could i suggest the absence of a quorum. house minority leader nancy pelosi spoke to reporters about the senate's decision to delete the vote on the health care replacement bill until after the july 4 recess. she is joined by other house democrats in this 20 minute news briefing. the house passed its own version of the health care bill in may.

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