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tv   Senator Merkely on the Affordable Care Act  CSPAN  July 19, 2017 5:45pm-6:06pm EDT

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ible for states, for better or worse, is responsible for the healthcare of the country, for the a healthcare of americans who voted for him and for americans who voted against him. he took an oath to faithfully execute the laws of this country, not just the ones he likes. there is no docking responsibility as president. the buck stops with you, president trump. if the procedural votes feel next week, i sincerely hope that my republican friends here in congress reject the premise of the president to let our healthcare system collapsed and hurt millions. instead, i hope they work with us in the areas i mentionedfi among many others do what is right for the american people. >> the most important three words are the first three, we the people.ti
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the mission statement for our nation laid out in a supersized font so that no one could forget what this document, our constitution, is all about. our founders didn't start out by saying we the privileged. they didn't call for a document form of government for we the powerful. indeed, they wanted to make clear that the structure of the government that they were founding would be different from those in europe that function from the privilege and the powerful. as president lincoln summarized our nation of the people, by the people and for the people. that is the vision. that's the vision i've been coming to the floor and talkinger about for the last year and a half. about the importance of ate government that responds to the issues that affect the citizens
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across that listens to the people of this nation. president jefferson said that the mother principle of unitednt states was that we have a government where each citizen has an equal voice. admittedly we had the closet had to be corrected to reach that objective but that vision of each citizen having an equal voice said that the only way that the government will reflect w the will of the people and make decisions that will reflect the will of the people. of course, it's hard to hold onto that vision because the powerful and privileged don't like that vision. they want a government of, by and for the powerful and privileged. not for the people. the history of the united states is one battle after another between having decisions that make a foundation families that
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thrive in the united states and decisions that raid the national traffic treasury for the benefit of the rich we see that battle time and time and time again and we've seen it very recently in this battle over healthcare. today i come to the floor to say that as the people of the united states have had an incredible by victory a resounding victory over those for champing government, by and for the privilege and powerful. it's really all about the top care bill that originated in the house of representatives that preceded to take and throat millions off insurance more than 20 million people off of insurance in order to give tax breaks for the richest
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americans. what did the hospital do? the house bill said we will give to the 400 richest americans $33 billion, not $33000, not $33 million but $33 billion. the richest 400 ripping away healthcare from millions of americans to pay for those kinds of tax breaks for the richest. just those tax breaks for the richest 400 americans would have paid for 700,000 americans to have medicaid, basic healthcare insurance and that's enough to cover the state of arkansas and west virginia, nevada, left allr put together and then we saw that house bill come over to the
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senate and the senate set up a group of secret 13. is there anything more opposite of we the people in the secret 13 senators meeting in the halls of this building particularly choosing a room that the press wasn't allowed onto because they didn't want to be seen entering the room or leaving the room. that's how secretive it was. that's how embarrassed they were about the possibility of having the american people see what they were crafting. they came forward with the senate version of the bill. the house version, the president of the united states of america called meeting. he called it heartless. but the senate vision didn't end up much different than the house version. the senate version that would proceed to throw more than 20 million people off of healthcare as well.
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the senate version that through maybe the cbo analysis would throw a million last over ten years, 22 million instead of 23 million but a million mored over the first year, 13 million rather than 12 million. indeed if it proceeded to constrain basic medicare -- it existed before obamacare in a fashion that over time to put a stranglehold on the medicaid and therefore was meaner, if you will, it was more heartless than the senate bill. then, the sacred 13, and their leadership said we don't want to have the american people see this so we won't give time to have committee hearings on it. we will keep it out of the healthcare committee. we will keep it out of the finance committee because the experts will come and the
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american people will see just how terrible, how mean, how heartless this bill is. we had the zero, zero, zero process. zero days of pretty examination compared eight years earlier to the longest committee hearing and market lasting five weeks in the health committee, healthar education labor and pensions committee. we had the second longest committee hearing and markup in finance eight years earlier. the longest in history. again, the senate leadership recently said no no exposure in the finance committee, zero days in the finance committee, zero days in the health committee zero months for the senators to go back and talk to their citizens and talk to their health care stakeholders about what this bill would mean and
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you know that something is wrong when you have a process that has diverged so dramatically from we the people. instead, the secret 13 on the zero days of committee examination and the zero days of finance committee and the zero months to be able to consult with healthcare experts and stakeholders and most portly, zero months we will hold a dialogue with the citizens back home. home but, on. we did hear from citizens at ho home, as much of the effort was to hold them at bay and give them the stiff arm, prevent them from weighing in and they weighed in, nonetheless. my office received well over 8000 phone calls and of those they iran 84: one saying stop this diabolical care bill.
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and i received a whole lot of constituent mail, more than 25000 people weighing in from oregon back home and they iran 36: one. when do you see such opposition? maybe we saw such oppositionnly because the people of the united states wanted to weigh in knowing that only the powerful special interest were meeting with secret 13 to design this diabolical bill that rips healthcare from millions of americans. maybe that's why so many american citizens weighed in and thank goodness they did weigh in. they filled our e-mail boxes they overflowed our phone systems and they filled the streets, often going to our home state offices to say thisre e
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matters and it certainly didn't matter. has there ever been a bill in the history of the united states that did more damage to more people than the trump care bill proposed here in the united states senate.? one of the things of the united states citizens did was to weigh in with their stories, 100 members of this chamber they wanted to let us know how unexpectedly they had been affected by having a child who had a sudden and dramatic a illness or a car accident that had occurred or suddenly a family member affected with cancer or emphysema or leukemia or multiple cirrhosis and the list went on and on. real people, realize, real inpu
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challenges real, we the people r influences. i heard from caroline in portland, the mother of two young children who wrote to me sharing her story of raising a child with special needs. and the help that the oregon health plan has been to her family.. organs version of medicaid. how terrified she was about not being able to afford health care for her child undertook care. i heard from gloria or i heardughter g from leslie who contacted me about his three and half -year-old daughter, gloria, who suffers from a rare genetic that is letter to live with near constant seizures and stick fibrosis. she needs intensive around-the-clock care and is able to get back care because of the special medicaid waiver that helps her parents afford it. with trump care she would have
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lost that waiver. i heard from jane and eugene who shared his battle of leukemia and stage four colon cancer.. he was told he can only expect to live another three months unless he received treatment. that was two years ago and he's alive because he was able to access treatment. he's been able to fight the battle with cancer and fight the battle leukemia. he is able to do so because the insurance he has through the affordable care act and carryers of from and her members of the family would be uninsurable because he had a blood clotting disease and her son who suffers from apple's policy.e
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that is the system we had in thefordable united states before we had the formal care act. then there was a woman from ashland who asked me not to share her name but i will call her katie. katie, a single mother who is currently battling cancer, invasive breast cancer and malignant melanoma. this is what you wrote to me and i quote: in simple terms, i will die without treatment and the ongoing care that i have received so far the oregon health plan as a single parent i can work 247 until my laste i breath and still my income would not afford meet the basic healthcare if it was not for the affordable care act. katie continued with a b pre-existing condition, i would not be insurable.
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left to suffer and even to succumb to my illness. once this was only a nightmare but now it is a horrifying reality, too surreal to be hunt. i cannot explain the deep heartache and frustration of the due thoughts of orphaning my son. all due to dying from an illness that could have been treated if i had been injured.p stories like katie's and caroline's in glorious keep coming in, day after day, e-mailde after e-mail, phone call after phone call. indeed, from individuals in my town hall, we can before last i held a lot of town halls and a couple special healthcare forums and a bunch of main street walks in oregon. five of those town halls were in ree counties that are very red, very republican and i lost those counties in my reelection by rates of 2240 to 50% but at
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those town hall people came out and said please, stop trump care. ago all they had for health -- for a health care plan was to say a prayer each night and hope that they didn't get sick the next day. say a prayer each night and hope that they weren't going to be in an accident the next day. that's all the health care that they had. but now they're able to get preventive care, preventive care for free. they are able to get injured preventive care for free and able to take their children in and get them and not. now i know if a loved one becomes ill or injured, that loved one will get the care they need and they won't go bankrupt in the process.
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that is peace of mind. isn't that the kind of foundation we want to enable every family to thrive in america? shouldn't we consider healthcare to be a basic right , a basic service that is provided with the healthcare w system in a we the people nation. not we the privileged nation where the only healthcare available to those rich enough to buy it. that is wealth care not healthcare. it can't leave everyone else in the cold. it's a we the people nation. the healthcare system suited to we the people where weom provide streets and public transportation and highways as part of the common infrastructure. where we provide public schools so that every child has a chance to thrive, and
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where we provide public health care so every citizen can have the peace of mind that at their loved one gets sick, they will get the care they need.aw we saw the opposite this year. we saw the house bill that would have thrown 12 million people off healthcare within a year end 23 million within ten years. after he celebrated with his champagne glasses and hiss leaders from house, weeks after he celebrated passage, someone told him what was in the bill. he said wow, that bill is mean and heartless.ate then we came to the senate and the secret 13 met and what did they craft? a bill that was even meaner and more heartless heartless. instead of throwing 12 million people off healthcare in a
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single year it through 13 million people off. over ten years essentially the same number as a house. it wrote a medicaid provision that over every subsequent year made medicaid less and less assessable to those who need it. that iran into a dead and so they said let's recraft something that's better. what do they do? they threw in the cruise amendment. what did i do? it's fake insurance. the fake insurance amendment. do you remember those days when you did advertisements for healthcare and say pass $25 a month. pass $50 a month and will give you a healthcare policy. lands of americans but those policies and they thought they had something valuable until they became sick and they went to the doctor and were told this doesn't cover your doctoror
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visit where your x-ray or your mri or the drugs you need to treat the illness. it doesn't cover a specialist. it doesn't cover hospital care. oh, and you're pregnant. how wonderful that you're going to have a child but your healthcare policy, that fake insurance policy that you bought doesn't cover maternity care. ameri fake insurance for the people of the united states of america. that is the cruise amendment that was added as a so-called improvement to the mean and meaner bill already crafted by the secret 13.t fake insurance, and to make it worse the fake insurance system means the healthcare policies that cover essential benefits enter into a death spiral.or >> we are leaving this more
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now for more live coverage. the congressional budget office has released the score on the gop healthcare law repeal bill that's currently pending in the senate. it would increase the number of uninsured americans by 17 million in 2018. 22million by 2026. they also say the bill would decrease the deficit by $473 billion by that same year of 2026. now we go live to the house budget committee which is marking up 2018 budget. members are commenting on particular sections, voting and debating on amendments. this meeting is expected to continue meeting late into the evening.

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