October 31st, 2009
10:37 AM ET
9 years ago

Boehner: Only Republicans have offered workable health-care plan

WASHINGTON (CNN) - House Minority Leader John Boehner pushed back Saturday against critics who accuse the GOP of attacking President Barack Obama's health-care plan without offering a formal Republican alternative.

"As a matter of fact, only Republicans have offered solutions to lower health-care costs and make it easier to obtain quality, affordable coverage without imposing a massive burden on the American people," Boehner said in the weekly Republican radio and Web address.

"We first released our health-care plan in June, and over the last six months, we have introduced at least eight bills that, taken together, would implement this blueprint," he said.

The GOP released the guiding principles of its health-care agenda in June, but did not release a comprehensive legislative blueprint at that point. Republican congressional leaders have said the party is in the process of crafting a substitute.

On the official GOP Web site, to which Boehner referred, the party pledges to formally offer its own plan during upcoming floor debate on the bill introduced by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

The site says the Republican proposal will incorporate all or part of the elements of health-care bills introduced by individual members, and a health-care plan introduced by the Republican Study Committee.

Boehner repeated Saturday the four main elements of the GOP's health care agenda:

- To let individuals and small businesses look for better insurance deals in other states.

- To allow them to pool together to receive the kind of insurance deals typically offered to large corporations.

- To create an environment that gives states greater range to experiment with cost-saving health care reforms.

- To institute tort reform.

He compared the Democratic version of the health-care plan to Bill and Hillary Clinton's failed 1993 proposal.

"It's clear where the American people stand on this issue," Boehner said.

"They're frustrated and fed up.

"We now have a choice: We can come together to implement smart, fiscally responsible reforms to improve Americans' health care or we can recklessly pursue this government takeover that creates far more problems than it solves," he said.

Floor debate on the Democratic bill introduced in the House on Thursday could begin as soon as next week.

Filed under: GOP weekly address
soundoff (233 Responses)
  1. Reginald

    Why does the media let the GOP get away with these lies. They haven't presented a health care plan. They have presented any plan with cost or reductions in cost. All the GOP has done is tried to protect the insurance industry.

    October 31, 2009 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  2. jj

    I wish the obama news networks would stand on the side of the people and begin discussing the GOP healthcare reform plan to help point out that a governement run option is not the only option nor...is it an efficient or cost effective option. We ought to get to the root cause of why healthcare services are so high and tackle them one by one. If obamacare is as costly as obamastimulus, this country will go broke with nothing to show for. Folks, we just got done spending a quarter million dollars for a job that pays maybe...25k/year. Lets wake up and see where our tax dollars are going and how wasteful it is being spent. This is no laughing matters.

    October 31, 2009 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  3. Calidan

    Since when is "1.Don't get sick. 2. If you do get sick, die quickly." considered a workable health plan?

    October 31, 2009 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  4. Susan Reyes

    I believe that Vice President Biden is being disrespectful of the office that he holds by discounting the views of his predecessor as irrelevant. I hope that the same is not done to him when he leaves office–or before.

    October 31, 2009 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  5. annie s

    These guys are hilarious. A workable plan? They've offered NO Plan. It is not a plan to say more of the same old nonsense that allows insurers their obscene profits at the risk of people's lives. I'm a self employed small business person who was also once a health center administrator – making me probably much more knowledgeable than any politician in the practices of these for-profit companies – and of the difficulty of finding affordable coverage for individuals and small businesses. I also belong to one of those "pools" that were supposed to help me find more affordable coverage. Of course, Republicans probably think that the $17000 per year we pay to insure two people with $5000 deductibles each is affordable. Give it up guys, there is way more at stake than corporate profits and campaign contributions.

    October 31, 2009 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  6. Democrat

    Why does it have to be separate. Why didn't you drop all the party line stuff and work together for the American people. Now it's who offered what and who's is better. Stop acting like middle school kids. Make it happen and make it a good thing for every AMERICAN.

    October 31, 2009 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  7. jon,philadelphia

    THE LAST TIME i CHACKED, THE ONLY thing the Republicans offered was NO!!!. His talke is laughable.

    October 31, 2009 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  8. Illinois 2

    If the GOP has a plan, put it in writing and let the voters decide which plan is the best after all we do have a stake in this and our voices should be heard...

    October 31, 2009 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  9. susie

    Democrats do not read bills that they pass. Amazing that they keep getting re-elected.

    October 31, 2009 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  10. Scott, Tucson

    Tort reform should be at the top of the list but Pelsoi have sided with the ambulance chasers by inserting into this bill of hers that health care funding to States would cease if they were to pass laws limiting malpractice suits / damages. So whose on the side of the lawyers? Why obama and the democrats of course.

    October 31, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  11. Merengo

    Funny how the "Party of No" now seems to have solutions on how to fix everything, including health care and the economy. Didn't hear or read, during 8 years of their rule, any one of them even indicated there were any problems to solve.

    October 31, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  12. ronvan

    WHAT A JOKE! NO ONE, especially Republicans, have ever fought so hard, AGAINST health care reform. This was an "untouchable" and political suicide issue until President Obama pushed it. Now, after almost everyone has stated that our current health care system is messed up and needs change, that people come out of the woodwork with their own plan! Where the heck have you been while the insurance companies, drug companies, etc. have been ripping us off for years? I still think that if those that are totally against any kind of change, were investigated, we would find their pockets lined with $$$ from these same companies!

    October 31, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  13. Kim

    Republicans plan on healthcare is to keep it the same. The sad thing about it...in their minds nothing is wrong with the healthcare system. They would rather use the money on a war based on a lie!!! Why do so many people follow the Rethuglicans?

    October 31, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  14. Independent and Senior Lilarose in Oregon

    Ummmm, would someone please direct me to the Republican's health care plan?

    I can't seem to locate it.

    October 31, 2009 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  15. maine liberal

    "As a matter of fact, only Republicans have offered solutions to lower health-care costs and make it easier to obtain quality, affordable coverage without imposing a massive burden on the American people"

    priceless lol

    This page intentionally left blank

    October 31, 2009 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  16. sandy

    Oh yea, then where is it? For eight Bush years, the Republicans offered nothing with regards to healthcare reform. Now, we at least have the opportunity for something and they say "NO" That is their favorite word. We, the American people are not stupid.

    October 31, 2009 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  17. Joe Burton

    All republicans should just shut up and get out of the way. They are incapable of anything productive unless it is making rich people richer.

    October 31, 2009 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  18. Byron

    Of course Boner only wants the republican plan to have a chance... Dems are not smart enough to recognize who is in charge.

    October 31, 2009 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  19. Eric

    Please Republicans were in control for years and had plenty of chances to change health care. they did nothing but sit back and let health care prices rice and watch more and more people go without any coverage at all. Quite honestly they can stop pretending they care about citizens. Nobody really buys there BS anymore. "They're frustrated and fed up" yes many Americans view on the republican party.

    October 31, 2009 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  20. VS, Florida

    Worthless politicians like Boehner will always make nonsense slogans. But, until the "blue dog" Democrats realise that they need to support their majority in a public option plan, the democrats won't have a good response. They also need to realise that by appeasing republicans they aren't going to get their votes. The reason they were elected was because of liberals within their districts voted for them.

    October 31, 2009 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  21. Amazed Dem

    Sadly, I like the GOP health plan better so far. It makes more sense. Just the little bit explained in the article provides me with more information on the Repub plan than the Dems have given me in the past 6 months. It is sad... The transparency I expected from the Dems has been non-existent. Everything is secret, at light speed and not shared with the public. I am disappointed right now. Get with it Dems. We need a health care plan, but not yours (from the little bit I have been able to gather and confirm about it).

    October 31, 2009 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  22. r.charles

    as a regular cnn reader i'm ashamed of cnn not giving the public this great news – since i have yet to see anything suggestive of a great republican plan. much of the stuff above just allows the hmo's to rip us all off even more , inhibit legal redress and encourage lousy medicine.


    October 31, 2009 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  23. Terry from West Texas

    Q: How can you tell if a Conservative is lying?
    A: If he's breathing, he's lying.

    This is another Conservative "no-plan plan." It boils down to two parts:

    1. Permitting Americans to continue to look for better health plans by themselves on their own (read the story)
    2. Cap lawsuit awards (this is where the money is. With Conservatives, always follow the money)

    This is not a health plan; it is tort reform. We in Texas are led by a Neanderthal governor and even less-talented legislators. They capped malpractice awards at $250,000 years ago. Studies have shown that the cost of medical care in Texas has not gone down one penny since then. Texans pay as much for medical care as people do in other states where award caps are not in place.

    But, if my drunken surgeon removes both my hands and both my eyes instead of my skin cancer, I could receive as much as two year's salary in compensation – after legal fees.

    Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Fool me hundreds of times over five decades and I must be a Conservative voter.

    October 31, 2009 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  24. R Scott

    The Republican'ts are a "come lately" group of old angry white guys! They complaint about everything ... giving NO solutions ,,,, then at the last minute before a vote they say "wait a minuate ... wait a minute" we have a great idea for the problem and throw out a few pieces of junk trying to get the process to come to a slowdown, These crooks will never change!

    October 31, 2009 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  25. Dithering GOP

    What took you so long? And, don't forget to get it scored for Americans to truly compare the plans or is this another stall tactic. The Dems has giving Boehner et al all the opportunities to participate in this needed reform and at the eleventh hour they want to present. Nancy Pelosi should listen to the arguments on the floor but don't let them play anymore games with this issue. The bill is up on the website republicans need to go and read it and come to the floor with plausible arguments not scare tactics.

    October 31, 2009 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
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