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Boustany: Working Together for American Health Care

June 04, 2009
American families are struggling with skyrocketing health care costs as our national economy emerges from a recession.
As a doctor and member of the House Republican Health Care Solutions Group, I have seen first hand American families and small businesses worried about rising costs and losing their coverage. The Urban Institute reported that President Obama’s health care plan would cost at least $1.5 trillion, more than double the $634 billion called for in the President’s original budget.
Why place this huge tax burden on businesses when America is in the midst of a recession? Wouldn’t this ultimately destroy and diminish American jobs and workers’ take home pay?
Although, Republicans and Democrats differ on some important health care policy issues, common ground exists on health care reform among the two parties. We both believe:
  • Quality health care coverage can be affordable and accessible for every American;
  • Americans who are content with their health care must be able to keep it, giving every American the freedom to choose the health plan that best meets their needs;
  • Health care reform must improve American lives through prevention and disease management programs, while developing innovative treatments and cures for life-threatening diseases;
  • It is possible – and necessary – to achieve the above objectives through common sense reforms, without raising taxes and eliminating employer-sponsored health benefits for working families.

Unlike the Democrats though, I believe a government takeover of health care will put bureaucrats in charge of health care decisions. These decisions should not be made by bureaucrats, but by families and the doctors of their choice. Tax hikes will be required to pay for government healthcare. This is something Republicans cannot support. It would plainly violate some of the principle’s President Obama himself has endorsed.

Republicans want to work with the President and his fellow Democrats to guarantee that every American has access to affordable, high-quality health coverage without more GM-style government takeovers. Working together we can achieve real results in healthcare.