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tv   Senator Wyden on CBO Cost Estimate  CSPAN  March 13, 2017 11:36pm-12:07am EDT

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finance committee spoke on the floor about the congressional budget office report showing 24 million people will lose an insurance coverage over the next decade under the republican beale to repeal the affordable architect. he spoke about what he called trump care to be cms administrator, confirmed are the administration monday. mr. wyden: the hard numbers are now in on trump care hands there is no sugar coating them for the american people. 24 million americans get kicked off their insurance plans. $880 billion will be slashed from medicaid in the first decade. a payday worth hundreds of millions of dollars goes out to the wealthiest and the special interests. that is what is one to be
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dropped on her plate if she has confirmed the end of the bill passes. it is her domination for debate right now. we should make no mistake that she is going to be in charge of the specifics. if trump care passes under section 132, the new administration would be able to give states a green light to push sick patients into high risk pools when the historical record shows that these high risk pulls are a failure when it comes to offering good coverage that is affordable. the new administrator would be in charge of section 134 and could decide exactly how skimpy trump care plans would be and how much more americans would be forced to pay out-of-pocket for the care that they need. the new administrator would that pavedion 135
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the way for health insurers to make coverage more expensive for those approaching retirement age. justhat is, mr. president, the start. the fact is, trumpcare is about enormous tax breaks for the pet -- or jeanette few. financed by cutting medicaid and hurting of older people and those who were of modest income. ms. verma and would have the job of implementing this at the centers for medicare and medicaid services. my view is the senate cannot debate this nomination without debating the trumpcare program. it will be a very huge part of the job. today, i am going to walk
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through some of this the civics with regard to trumpcare, beginning with the scheme that i ." l "robin hood in reverse if you look at the fund, it is clear that this is an di-popping transfer of wealth away from older people, women, kids, the most vulnerable directly into the wallets of the fortunate few. no part of the trumpcare bill shows more clearly than the fact it steals from the medical medicare trust fund to pay for a tax cut that goes directly to the most fortunate, only does it make a quarter million dollars or more per year. mr. president, everybody in america who brings back a paycheck adds a little bit taken out each and every time for medicare. it is like they are on -- it is
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right on the paystub, automatic. under trump care, the only people who are going to see a medicare tax cut are the people who need it least. so i want to repeat that. in america when they get a paycheck, they see a medicare tax and everybody pays it. and we understand why it's so important. going to be 10,000 people turning 65 every day for years and years to come. the only people, the only people who are going to get that medicare tax cut are the people who need it least, and that tax cut that's going to go to the fortunate few will take three years off the life of the medicare program depleting the program in 2025 instead of 2028. that particular cut breaks a
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clear trump promise not to harm medicare. all through the campaign, mr. president, then candidate trump was very, very firm in saying he would do no harm to medicare. he said and i quote, you can't get rid of medicare. medicare is a program that works. i'm going to fix it and make it better but i'm not going to cut it. the promise not to cut medicare lasted about six and a half weeks into the trump administration before it was broken. the bottom line is trumpcare raids medicare. it raids medicare and causes harm to medicare in violation of an explicit trump promise during the campaign. and it brings medicare three years closer to a crisis to pay for a tax cut for the wealthiest
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in america. so you have this enormous eye-popping transfer of wealth from working people and seniors and people of modest means to the most fortunate and somehow people have the chutzpah to say it's a health care bill? i don't think so. it is a huge, huge tax windfall for the fortunate. there's also the tax break on investment income. once again this is a break that's going to only go to the most fortunate among us, and with the investment tax break, the overwhelming majority of the benefit, nearly two-thirds of it will go to the top one-tenth of 1% of earners in america. so that looks like an awful lot of money going to the fortunate few, mr. president, but we're
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not even done there. on top of all this, there is yet another juicy tax. this time for healthy insurance executives' salaries, another juicy tax cut for executives who are making over $500,000 per year. now, it is not just medicare that's getting raided under this proposal. some of those who are hit the hardest by trumpcare are those approaching retirement age. if you are an older american of modest income, 5 or 60 and you've owe 55 -- 55 or 60 and you have to get private insurance in the market, trumpcare is going to cause your prices to go through the extras fear. parts of -- extra stratosphere. in my home state, a 60-year-old who brings home $30,000 a year could see their insurance costs go up by $8,000.
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mror more.much of this is due te call an age tax. it's a key part of trumpcare. it's another key part of what miss verma will be in charge of implementing. the bill would give health insurance companies the green light to charge older people five times as much as they charge younger people. mr. wyden: so if you are a person of modest means, a few years away from qualifying for medicare, and your insurance premiums jump by $8,000, that means you're just out of luck. you're going to be locked out of the system. you're basically going to have to hope that you just don't get sick before you're eligible for medicare. and those tax credits that you hear so much about from
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trumpcare advocates, they aren't going to be of much consolation to you. that's because trumpcare puts a hard cap on your tax credit as an older person, just $4,000, and the odds are good that it wouldn't come close to covering the expense of a decent insurance plan. now i'm going to turn to medicaid because trumpcare doesn't just make little changes around the margins. doesn't strengthen or preserve this program that covers 74 million americans. mr. president, trumpcare hits medicaid like a wrecking ball, and it has particular implications for seniors. and i'm going to walk us through those. the medicaid nursing home benefit is very much at risk now because of the trumpcare cuts as
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it relates to medicaid. medicaid picks up the bill for two out of three nursing home patients. these are the people who worked a lifetime, raised kids, put them through school, scrimped and saved all they could. these are the people, mr. president, who in kansas and in oregon and across the country, they never went on the special vacation. they never bought a boat. all they did was try to scrimp and save and educate their kids. but the fact is growing old in america is pricey. and after a few years of balancing the rent bill against the food bill and the food bill against the medical costs, what happens is a lot of seniors just exhaust their savings. mr. president, when i was director of the oregon great panthers, what i saw in my state and it's duplicated everywhere, was older people walking every
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single week on an economic tightrope, balancing those food bills against the medical bills and the medical bills against the rent bills. and they just couldn't keep up. and they burned through all of their funds, they burned through their modest savings. so when it's time to pay for nursing home care, they have to turn to medicaid. today in america, the medicaid nursing home benefit is a guarantee that those vulnerable older people, the people who are walking on that economic tightrope, that they're going to be taken care of. trumpcare breaks the medicaid nursing home guarantee, and it goes even further than that. a lot of states -- mine is one -- worked hard to give more
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care choices to seniors as well as those with disabilities. maybe instead of living in a nursing home or an institution, they would rather be in the community. maybe they would rather live at home where they're most comfortable. trumpcare could mean that those home and community-based choices could disappear as well. so what we're talking about, mr. president, is that with these cuts in medicaid, at a time when in kansas and oregon and across the country what we have tried to build for older people is a continuum of services. there would be help at home, there would be help in terms of long-term care facilities. there would be a wide array of choices. and because of medicaid, there was enough money to fund these choices, to fund this continuum of care for vulnerable older
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people. now as a result of the medicaid cutbacks, my concern is there is not going to be enough money for any of these choices, not going to be enough money for the nursing home benefit, not going to be enough money for home and community-based services. and suffice it to say, my own home state has indicated to me that they're very concerned about the cutback in home and community-based services. nobody wants to see older people get nickel and dimed for the basics in home care they rely on and good nursing home benefits, yet when it comes to medicaid, trumpcare would effectively end the program as it exists today, shredding the health care safety net for older people and millions of others in our country. it puts an expiration date on the medicaid coverage that millions of americans got
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through the affordable care act. for many, it was the first time they had health insurance. it brought an end to an era where those individuals could turn only to emergency rooms for care, and now trumpcare is going to cap the medicaid budget and just squeeze it and squeeze it and squeeze it some more until vulnerable people will just not be able to get care. now, the program is particularly important for seniors and the disabled, and i want to make sure that people understand what it means for children as well, for those in the dawn of life as well as those in the twilight of life. medicaid pays for half of all births and kids make up half of medicaid's enrollees. it's important to remember that in many cases, these are kids
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that already have the odds stacked against them. they're from low-income families, they're foster kids, they're kids with disabilities. we know that they're already facing an uphill climb. medicaid, though, has been there now with the affordable care act to make sure that they could see family practitioners. pediatric specialists, that was just unheard of for these youngsters, mr. president, before the affordable care act. and when a kid needs emergency care, medicaid is what makes it affordable. trumpcare puts that in danger. so i have talked p what it -- about what it means for older people and what it means for the disabled and what it means for kids, and i'm just going to keep on going, mr. president, because now that we have the hard numbers in, the hard numbers
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have arrived here in real time from the budget office that's charged with giving us this analysis, it's important to talk about what it means because budgets are not just facts and figures and cold sheets of paper. they're about your hopes and aspirations, and the hopes and aspirations that i've had since those days when i was director of the oregon gray panthers, which was to make sure that people had affordable, quality, decent health care choices, because in america if you don't have your health, you really are missing much of what makes life so special in our country. so the bill also takes an enormous toll in other areas, and i want to mention next opioid abuse. by slashing medicaid, trumpcare is going to make america's
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epidemic of prescription drug abuse-related deaths even worse. the papers this morning had accounts, mr. president, about how families were losing most of their children to opioid addiction. most of their children lost opioid addiction. on the front pages of the papers. medicaid is a key source of coverage for mental health and substance abuse disorder treatment, particularly after the affordable care act, but this bill takes away the coverage from millions who need it. republican state lawmakers, to their credit, have spoken out about this issue. and frankly, it just ought to be a head scratcher for anybody who remembers the last presidential race when a parade of candidates rolled through state after state in the primary race that had
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been hit hard by the opioid crisis and all of those candidates were trying to outpromise the one who had spoken previously in terms of how they would help solve the opioid crisis. then-candidate trump was one of the most out spoken on saying that he would fix the opioid crisis. he said he was the guy who could end the scourge of drug addiction and get americans the help they need. instead, what we have is trumpcare that makes the opioid crisis worse, and there is no getting around it. trumpcare puts states in the unimaginable position of having to decide whose medicaid to slash. are they going to tell seniors that the nursing home benefit is
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no longer a guarantee, and they're going to have to get in a long waiting line for an opportunity to get a place in the local nursing home? should they tell pregnant women that births are no longer covered? what about telling mothers and fathers that their kids are cut off and they'll have to hope for the best or make their way back to the emergency room? now, mr. president, i also want to touch on a final point that really deserves some discussion and hasn't gotten much and the finance staff has been looking at it, and that is how trumpcare really creates a disincentive to work, because i think trumpcare and ms. verma's role implementing it is going to have a substantial effect on american
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workers and entrepreneurs. it's my true that trumpcare creates a substantial, significant disincentive to work. today, if you're on medicaid, you're able to pick up a few extra hours at work or go out and accept a higher paying job without the fear that you'll lose access to care. that's because under the affordable care act, low-income americans get the most help when it comes to paying insurance premiums. a lot of persons can get health insurance for less than $100 a month. now, let's compare that with the trumpcare approach. under the trumpcare plan, those who are walking an economic tightrope, bringing home barely more than the minimum wage, they don't get the most help. they don't get the most help, and they could see their
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insurance costs go up by thousands and thousands of dollars each year, which would effectively mean they would be locked out of the health care system. so for millions of persons staying on medicaid would suddenly look a lot more attractive. making a little more money and losing your medicaid coverage could mean losing your access to high quality health care altogether. so my view is nobody's been able to counter this. trumpcare in effect would keep americans trapped in poverty. entrepreneurs and americans who want to go back to school to pursue a degree would face the same dilemma. somebody wants to quit their job and pursue their dream of starting their own business ought to be able to do it without a fear that they wouldn't be able to any longer afford health care. the same goes for those who want to go back to school full time
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to pursue a degree or certification. trumpcare makes insurance unaffordable for those persons. now, mr. president, trumpcare is going to be the big issue on mss confirmed this afternoon in the senate to administer this office. we all understand that this bill has been taking a pounding from all sides. moderate republicans, those who consider themselves conservative republicans are against it, covers from both parties are against it. democrats are united. the aarp, the american hospital association, the american medical association, the american nurses association have all come out against the bill. not any surprise to me. i don't think these groups think that health care and health care legislation is primarily about
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ladling out big tax breaks for the fortunate few, but that's what this so-called health care bill does, and it's financed by raiding medicare, by gutting medicaid and by hurting older and sicker and lower income americans. there has been a lot of happy talk about why you ought to support this bill, but what i have tried to do is lay out this afternoon the broken promises. this weekend, for example, the new secretary of health and human services said, and i quote, i firmly believe that nobody will be worse off financially in the process that we're going through, understanding that they will have choices that they can select the kind of coverage they want for themselves and for their families. that statement from the secretary of health and human
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services is just disconnected from the facts. the simple math shows that trumpcare forces millions of people, particularly older people, less affluent people, to pay thousands of dollars more for their health insurance. the o.m.b. bror, the budget director mick mulvaney was questioned on why trumpcare breaks the promise of insurance for everybody. his response was that trumpcare is about access and the bill, quote, helps people get health care instead of just coverage, but we all understand access doesn't mean a lot if people can't afford to get coverage. that's the future that trumpcare is going to bring for millions of americans. i asked ms. verma the most basic questions during her confirmation hearing so we could get even a little bit of an insight into how she would
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approach these issues. i asked for one example. these are not gotcha questions, mr. president. these are the questions you ask if you want to know about running a program involving a trillion dollars. i said one example, ms. verma, of what you do to bring down the cost of prescription medicine. i gave her three or four to choose from. i particularly would like to see more transparency and lifting this cloud of darkness surrounding how medicines are priced. she didn't have any answers to any of these questions. so here's where this nomination stands. ms. verma gave the finance committee and the public virtually nothing to go by in terms of how she would approach this job. it's a fact that if confirmed she would be one of the top officials to implement
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trumpcare, a bill that raids medicare, slashes medicaid and kicks millions of americans off their health plan to pay for a tax cut for the wealthy. so i'm unable to support this nomination. i urge my colleagues to oppose it. i ask unanimous consent that i be allowed to enter an additional statement and associated documents into the record, and i yield the floor a announcer: here is a headline -- millions would lose coverage under gop health care. quote, the congressional budget office projected the number of uninsured would grow by 20 million by 2018 under the obamacare replacement bill, with that number raising to 24 million within a decade.
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likely to shake up the debate in congress over the measure which could come up for a vote in the house next week. the estimate of the drop in coverage is larger than even many analysts had predicted. the article goes on, and positive news for republicans cbo finds the legislation would decrease the federal billionby three to $700 through 2026, mostly through the elimination of obama's medicare expansion and subsidies to help people buy insurance. it can help house republicans sell the legislation to skeptical conservatives. you can read more at the hill.com and read the entire cbo report on our website, c-span.org. >> and case you missed it, here
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is some clips of c-span programming this past week. nominee for deputy attorney rod rosenstein before the senate committee. >> we need to refrain from discouraging people unless it is necessary in the case. of we charge of a crime and it is necessary to introduce an course, we do it. if we do not charge him with a crime, it is necessary not to disparage their character. announcer: dick durbin on president trump's revised travel ban. >> there are some cosmetic changes but these changes do not alter the fact that president trump's travel ban is still unconstitutional and still inconsiderate with the values of this nation. >> paul ryan on the health care plan. >> so we said to our constituents, if you give us this chance, this opportunity, this is what we will do. now is our chance and
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opportunity to do it. senator chris murphy on the legislation to replace the affordable care act. >> well, trumpcare is here and you're going to hate it. this is a dumpster fire of a bill that was written on the back of a napkin kind closed doors, because republicans a disaster. announcer: ambassador to the u.n. nikki haley on north korea's use of ballistic missiles. >> this is someone who is trying to get attention. as a reaction. at this is what bothers us. it hit less than 200 nautical miles of japan. they said that their goal is to be able to reach u.s. bases in japan. this is not something we can take lightly. the global community needs to understand that every country is in danger from the actions of north korea. announcer: congressman eliot engel during the markup of the
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health-care bill. >> this is one of the most important things. it if it is rushed through, we are buying a pig and a poke. details.have all the that is why we are disgruntled on the other side of the out, we do not like this thing jim down our throats, rest down our throats, rushed down the american people's threats. announcer: you can see all of website, on our homepage, and by searching the video library. >> now remarks from house minority leader nancy pelosi and senate minority leader chuck schumer on the health care bill following get be cbo report. they spoke to reporters at the capital.

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