May 16th, 2009
01:04 PM ET
5 years ago

GOP pledges to work with Obama on key issue

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Rep. Charles Boustany Jr., R-Louisiana, said in the Republican weekly address that it is his party's desire to work with President Obama and congressional Democrats on reforming the country's health care system.

"Let me be clear, Republicans want to work with President Obama and other Democrats to ensure that every American has access to affordable, high-quality health coverage," he said. "Despite our differences, we are convinced there are areas of common-sense agreement on health care reform among Republicans and Democrats. This issue is just too important to let partisanship or blind ideology get in the way. Let’s all work together to do the right thing for the American people."

Boustany, a doctor and member of the House Republican Health Care Solutions Group, said the GOP is "convinced" that there are some areas offering potential for common ground on tackling rising health care costs.

Transcript:

“Hello, I’m Charles Boustany, a doctor and member of the House Republican Health Care Solutions Group. We all know that in this troubled economy, American families are increasingly worried about their health care. In my home of Louisiana, I hear constantly from families and small businesses about rising costs and fears of losing coverage and as a physician I saw this first hand. Let me be clear, Republicans want to work with President Obama and other Democrats to ensure that every American has access to affordable, high-quality health coverage.

“Despite our differences on some important health care-related issues, we are convinced there are areas offering potential for common ground on health care reform among the two parties.

“We believe we must make quality health care coverage affordable and accessible for every American, regardless of pre-existing health conditions. President Obama has called for a plan that ‘puts us on a clear path to cover all Americans,’ and said ‘no American should be denied coverage because of preexisting conditions.’ Republicans agree.

“We believe health care reform must let Americans who like their health care coverage keep it, and give all Americans the freedom to choose the health care plan that best meets their families’ needs. The President has said Americans ‘should have the option of keeping their employer-based health plan,’ and said reform ‘should provide Americans a choice of health plans and physicians.’ Republicans agree.

“We believe health care reform must improve Americans’ lives through effective prevention, wellness, and disease management programs, while developing new treatments and cures for life-threatening diseases, and respecting the value of human life. The President has said health care reform must address ‘cost drivers’ in our system such as ‘obesity, sedentary lifestyles, and smoking.’ Republicans agree.

“We believe it is possible – and necessary – to achieve these objectives through common-sense reforms without raising taxes, rationing care, eliminating employer-sponsored health benefits for working families, empowering government bureaucrats at the expense of patients and doctors, or adding even more to our ever-growing national debt.

“At the same time, Republicans are concerned about news reports indicating that some Democrats favor a policy called a ‘government’ or ‘public’ option. We need to be clear about what this means. From my former practice, I know allowing the government to replace the health coverage that more than 100 million Americans currently have through their jobs could have devastating consequences. A government takeover of health care will put bureaucrats in charge of health care decisions that should be made by families and doctors. It will limit treatment options and lead to rationed care. And to pay for government health care, your taxes will be raised. That is something we cannot support, and frankly, it would clearly violate some of the principles the President himself has endorsed.

“That having been said, I want to reiterate Republicans’ sincere desire to work with President Obama and Democrats to find common ground on the issue of health care reform. Despite our differences, we are convinced there are areas of common-sense agreement on health care reform among Republicans and Democrats. This issue is just too important to let partisanship or blind ideology get in the way. Let’s all work together to do the right thing for the American people.

“Thank you for listening.”


Filed under: GOP
soundoff (235 Responses)
  1. dzung

    Rep.Charles Boustany,Did you check with the republican pig limbo before you said this,you will be sorry if you did not check with pig,he will bring you down.

    May 16, 2009 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  2. G

    I'll believe it when I see it! And did anybody ask Rush?

    May 16, 2009 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  3. Charles

    alvino – do you know the only reason the health care providers and drug companies are "trying to work for companies" is because they'll be making a windfall of profits. Since the government will be paying health care to everyone who can't afford it, or can afford it but are too lazy to buy it, the health care providers and companies can artificially raise prices. They can charge the government more money b/c they know the government will pay. Guess where that money comes from: Our pockets (assuming you're a responsible person who pays your taxes. On top of this, individuals who choose to pay for their own health care will face rising costs - all of these costs even though the quality of care will go down.

    May 16, 2009 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  4. Mark

    Yeah, right.

    May 16, 2009 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  5. E-Man

    We'll see how honest this statement is. Time tells all. The Republicans are splintered these day, very fractioius.

    May 16, 2009 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  6. John

    Universal coverage is the right idea.
    BUT
    It must be private insurance sponsored by the gov.
    No coverage for illegal ALIENS. They can get ER and show ID which will be the ticket back to Mexico
    regulate the costs not the companies.
    great opportunity to increase birth control for the most needy

    May 16, 2009 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  7. rick,alabama

    Thats what they say right before they vote no.

    May 16, 2009 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  8. Steven

    OH poor, Paula do you and your Authoritarian party members (GOP) know you sound worst then the "New World Order Americans in work camp" people with this birth certificate junk!!!

    Just be adult enough to admit its because you are a bigot or a poor looser. There are homeless people in new york talking to invisible things who make more since then you do Paula!

    May 16, 2009 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  9. barking republican ankle biters

    Dont let the companies,"the republicans" have any say at all,they just want to keep screwing the American people.

    May 16, 2009 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  10. coach

    Let's hope so because it won't happen if the parties don't work together. Continue the effort.

    Paula, you need help.

    May 16, 2009 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
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