tv Senate Democratic Leaders News Conference CSPAN May 8, 2018 6:56pm-7:18pm EDT
>> okay folks, all right. first i want to thank my colleagues senators murphy van hollen and has been for joining me or peter for the coming days weeks a month health insurance companies are going to begin requesting rate increases in states across the country. we have rdb seemed the beginning of this with virginia and maryland requesting huge rate increases that are going to empty out the wallet of working families. if these early states are any indication health insurance companies are going to ask for huge hikes in the wake of president trump and congressional congressional republicans are. efforts to sabotage our health care system. we democrats are going to be relentless in making sure the american people understand exactly who is to blame. republicans control the
presidency, the house and the senate. the rate increases would be on their backs normally they are supposed to be in charge but more so because they have actively things to increase rates on families. since president trump took office republicans worked day in and day out to systematically dismantle our health care system despite promises the president made on the campaign trail. this is what president trump said when he was running. quote he's going to take care of everybody "quote deliver health care that is far less expensive and far better. clearly their efforts were all a ruse to put the insurance companies back in charge and force americans to pay more for less when it comes to health care. once again keeping with the theme of putting corporations and special interest before the
american people republicans have tried to sabotage the system. let me be clear. the increase in health care health care costs for families and maryland, virginia and throughout the nation are symptom of republicans sabotage and they will be wholly responsible for each and every rate increase we are going to see forward. don't just take it from me. take it from former hhs secretary tom price and architect of much of the sabotage who just last week like her colleague marco rubio laid out the naked truth about the republican tax scam of the rich printers with secretary price said. quote he believes that repealing the individual mandate will actually harm the pool and exchange market and consequently that drives up the cost for other folks. this is not a democrat. this is secretary price a
republican appointed hhs secretary who is in charge of republican acts in congress and the white house for premiums to go up. so i will close with this. president trump and the republicans promised america a better and cheaper health care system but instead of working with democrats to achieve more portable health care for americans they took the partisan route and made innings worse. simply put, president trump has dropped the ball on health care and the american people know it.
senator murphy. >> thank you senator schumer. it's not rocket science to try to figure out why this has happened and i just want to take a few minutes to walk through this very deliberate campaign of sabotage. since the day that trump took office he has had one goal which is to weaken the american health care system as a punishment to
president obama for his work on the affordable care at. within days of coming to office president trump signed an executive order instructing his agencies to start to undermine the american health care system. he then reduced enrollment outreach to try to assure that americans would know about the affordable options available to them. even if they managed to find out about it. he canceled cause sharing reduction payments with the insurance companies have attributed to a sizable portion of the rate increases that they are filing along with congress and the republicans here repealing the individual mandates which keeps these insurance pools evened out between costs for wealth.
they will push a new rule that will allow junk plans to be offered which will further compromise the health of the small small group and individual plans, raising rates even higher to the catastrophic level. the commonwealth fund showing that since president trump took office 4 million americans have lost their health insurance. those numbers are going to continue to spiral upwards in this campaign of sabotage. we are just beginning to see these rate filings offer up the summer. insurance companies will be filing rate increases. already we are seeing some plans replacing rate increases of almost 90%. senate democrats will be on the floor of the united states senate every week talking to the american public about these rate increases in making sure that they know that this campaign of sabotage begun in the first week of the trump presidency is to be
held solely responsible for these gigantic increases. >> senator van hollen. >> think you. it is want to add a couple of points to those of my colleagues. the first is that rising health care costs are at the top of the list of concerns of people throughout the country. our senators from every state are finding that as they go to town hall meetings and talk to folks in urban areas rural areas in suburban areas and it's very personal to people. this is a pocket that issue. that anecdotal evidence that our members are getting in the field are back up by all the polling data. every national poll i have seen shows that health care costs are at the top of the list of concerns of the american public. second, the american people are
on to the fact that these rising costs are a result of republican policies. trump administration policies and the policies by the republican congress. in march "cnn" had a poll showing 56-36 public trust democrats more on the issue of health care and health care costs. it should not be divisive given what you heard from my colleagues. we just passed the one-year anniversary of the republican efforts to totally blow up the affordable care act. the reality is that when rural hospitals and the american cancer society and the american diabetes association when americans rose up not on personal grounds that health care grounds to stop that what happened was the trump administration republicans decided to try to kill it including the poison pill they put in the tax measure that recently passed. as a result you are seeing these
rapidly increasing costs including one of the plants and maryland calling for a 91% increase. i just want to read a quote from chad burwell who minced no words as to the cost here in a quote and this is from the chair. first continuing action on the part of the administration to systematically undermine the market and make it almost impossible to carry out the mission. that's why health care costs are are going up. the american people are onto it and i can assure you our colleagues will continue every weekend to bring those costs down. we are fighting the republican congress that is determined to take us in another direction. they were public and budget cutting medicare and a call for
cutting medicaid by a trillion dollars. that is what was part of the budget tax cuts for big corporations come increasing health care costs for everybody else. i'd like to hand it over to my colleague or new hampshire who has been a tenacious fighter on this. >> well thanks and thank you to senator schumer and earthy as well. when congressional republicans tried to repeal the affordable care at last year the american people made their voices heard and they defeated those attempts. i am always struck or the number of people who come from all around the country, sometimes a great hardship especially for families with young children who are medically compromised that made their way to the nation's capitol to let their elected representatives know what health
care meant to them and what repeal of the affordable care act would mean to them that i watched parents talk about this as they tended to children with tracheotomy's or oxygen tanks. health care matters to the american people and they made that clear last year. as a result we were able to defeat the outright repeal of it but unfortunately the trump administration and congressional republicans are sabotaging the health care system in other ways including as you heard from my colleague standing these junk insurance plans that discriminate against people with pre-existing conditions. i think it's really important for the american people to understand that these superficially attract plans are lower in cost are going to cover what you need to cover when you actually get sick. but that hasn't stopped the
administration from expanding those plans, allowing those plans to discriminate against people with pre-existing conditions. the administration also and the republicans in congress made sure the affordable care at coverage requirement was appealed and their tax bill so the individual mandate is gone but as we now know that raises health care costs for millions of americans, making it harder for millions of americans to get the health care they need all and the massive tax break to special corporate interests and the ultra-wealthy. as senator schumer pointed out even former secretary tom price a republicans said that rep peel coverage harms the pool and exchange market and consequently that drives up the cost for other folks in the market. i don't often agree with former secretary price but he made
clear what we all know to be true. sabotage from congressional republicans and the administration is raising premiums and it is hurting hard-working americans. i hope the premium increases we are seeing serves as a wake-up call to my republican colleagues. it's long past time to drop partisan efforts that undermine our health care system today hope very much that my colleagues will calm to the table and work with us to make health care more affordable because we need to take real action to lower health care costs including addressing the skyrocketing cost of prescription drugs. i stand ready to work with anybody who is serious about doing that. the american people consistently and repeatedly have asked us to do that. they solve problems every day at home and they expect us all to
do that here in washington. >> i think my three colleagues for their
great remarks. questions? [inaudible] >> there are no reports that iran has violated the agreement and to me the greatest worries from iran are not right now the on the nuclear side of brother what they are doing in syria and what they are doing to armed hezbollah with rockets and what they are doing at the icbms. to me the right thing today would have been to try to come up with our allies on those issues and let the nuclear part of this continue as it is because it's not being violated in any way. by dividing our allies and i just heard the president say he would impose secondary sanctions on european and asian allies,
they are making it hard to go after hezbollah. they are making it harder to go after iranian act to these that are really dangerous and probably making it harder to come to a north korean deal. when i read what had happened i was just aghast and i was glad that general schneiderman quickly step down. [inaudible] >> come on, mitch. [inaudible] >> look, 62% of americans are for legalization of marijuana. we just called her and decolonization and we don't have
federal enforcement in the state. i think this is something that is long overdue and i hope to see it happen. i hope that the feds would take a heavy hand off. [inaudible] >> you have to see what they are proposing but i don't see a path this is a little like replacing repeal. they have these words and they used to them in the campaign and they don't have a real plan here. i don't know how the plan works by dividing our allies. what do you do with the iaea and how are you really going to enforce the sanctions? i just don't see a concrete plan emerging and when i spoke to the vice president i asked him a whole lot of questions and didn't get good answers.
[inaudible] >> i am awaiting a hearing. those will be very important before making up my mind in any way and i think that's true of just about all of our caucus. [inaudible] >> i'm not going to speculate until we see the results. the story came out at seven in the step down at 10. he did the right thing and i'm glad he did. it's only a day after he stepped down. i'm not going to get into speculation. [inaudible] >> eaves rescissions are outrageous. we are going after ship program
that helps working families pay for health care for their kids which has the broad support of the mac and people. the hard right, the mulvaney wing of the republican party seems to have the upper hand against what most americans want furthermore leader mcconnell and i am chairman shelby and vice chair leahy we had a good meeting. i think doing these types of rescissions in
the senate would sour the ability to get it done. thank you everybody. [inaudible]
an important issue in my state is that there seems to be a division that's being promoted in our citizenry and perhaps it's even international concerns a lot of people. it's important to remind the citizens of washington that if you get an opportunity to talk to each other more than likely will find its very similar and we should try to remember that. [inaudible]
>> i lived in olympia washington and one issue to me is the death penalty. i want to abolish it. i think we can put money into education and other resources that would be better served. >> an important issue in my state is education for the children. i believe they are our future leaders and we need to have the funding to do that. that's one of the top issues that we have today.