June 30th, 2012
06:00 AM ET
2 years ago

Barrasso argues for repeal of health care law

(CNN) - Sen John Barrasso called for repeal of President Barack Obama's health reform law, saying it has failed to solve major issues with the U.S. health system.

"It is a law that is bad for patients, it is bad for the nurses and the doctors who care for those patients, and it's terrible for tax payers," he said in the GOP weekly address.

The U.S. Supreme Court upheld the law Thursday, including the mandate that many individuals obtain or retain coverage, or otherwise pay a fine.

Barrasso, a doctor and a Republican from Wyoming, argued that the law further ailed the country's struggling health care system and weak economy.

"In the middle of a tough economy, President Obama passed a health care law that has made our economy even worse," he said. "With unemployment over 8 % for over 40 straight months, we cannot afford for this tax to stay in place any longer."

The high court ruled that the fine is a tax and Republicans have since criticized the law for being a tax increase on struggling, middle-class families. Democrats have instead called it a penalty.

"The president's health care law hires more IRS agents to investigate you and to make sure you buy insurance," Barrasso said, "but it fails to deal with the shortage of nurses and doctors to actually take care of you."

Other negative impacts to the health care system include Medicare reductions and increases to premiums, he said.

Barrasso said Republicans will "replace this law with real reforms that actually lower costs and improve access to care."

He said his party would craft the bill through a more open process - a swipe against Obama's pledges of transparency. The solution favored by Republicans would include tort reform, allowing insurance to be purchased across state lines, allowing small businesses to pool for better rates and "allowing premium breaks to encourage healthy behavior."

"Now, we have another chance to reform our health care system and in a way that does not result in higher costs, fewer choices and less personal control," he said.

Barrasso's address notably makes no mention of the word "Obamacare," which Republicans have long used as a criticism of the law. Nor does he mention the Republican Party's presumptive presidential nominee, who advocated for a state health care law when governor of Massachusetts that has been criticized by some Republicans and compared to Obama's plan.


Filed under: Health care • John Barrasso • Republicans • Senate
soundoff (66 Responses)
  1. ronjayaz

    ""With unemployment over 8 % for over 40 straight months, we cannot afford for this tax to stay in place any longer." Wow! And he's a doctor, too. You mean to say even I as a layman, unversed in medicine, knows that person healthily maintained in life is work ready to become employed. A sick employee is not hireable. Get it, Doc?

    June 30, 2012 06:14 am at 6:14 am |
  2. J.V.Hodgson

    Do these people listen to anyone else other than thier ideology
    46% think its a good law a significant additional group think it did not go far enough and a single payer type approach may have been better.
    I just do not see the political advantage in thier continuing opposition, the nation is clearly divided on Party lines on this already.... and repeal would have tough passage if its even possible in our gridlocked system, after the November elections, and even if Romney were to win the Presidential race which I see as unlikely.
    Fighting the fight on this and not dealing with Jobs, budget deficit, debt, and the cliif we are about to fall off gets Republicans nowhere.
    Regards,
    Hodgson.

    June 30, 2012 06:27 am at 6:27 am |
  3. Henry Akeni

    While Unemployment still hovers in the 8% bracket, the healthcare bill is a victory for all. The republicans only critices but have not been able to come up with alternatives that will suit all the different classes and strata in the economy.

    June 30, 2012 06:37 am at 6:37 am |
  4. jane

    move on already.........

    June 30, 2012 06:52 am at 6:52 am |
  5. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Why do republicans object to everyone paying for healthcare? The only people who will be "taxed" are those who refuse to get insured and expect us to pay for their visits to the emergency room. Those uninsured republicans are called freeloaders, and need to pay their own way.

    June 30, 2012 07:01 am at 7:01 am |
  6. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Republicans are always beating a dead horse. They want to eliminate social security, medicare, VA benefits, minimum wage laws, equal pay for women, civil rights acts, Roe v Wade, wall street regulations, and now the ACA. What a sorry group these morons are.

    June 30, 2012 07:04 am at 7:04 am |
  7. Ann

    Nice try, Barrasso. But GOP and alexithemic Mitt are on the wrong side of history, AGAIN.

    June 30, 2012 07:27 am at 7:27 am |
  8. clarke

    Instead of sound bites, explain to me why it is bad, how it is bad. show me. This is all new, so how do you know it will not work and whyi. I am not being a smart mouth, I really want to know. I am trying to understand both sides. American's are never in favor of the unknown. You won't go into a dark cave without a light.

    June 30, 2012 07:35 am at 7:35 am |
  9. Im Waiting

    Good, so get your Republican House Members to pass the bill to do what you say will cure the problem. It's that easy. Then people have a bigger choice, they can see which program works and which one does not. Now back to your statement about not affording a tax. There is no tax charged for ObamaCare and you make it sound like there is. The only tax we have now is to pay for people without insurance that go to Emergency Rooms for free thanks to Reagan. If you want to repeal anything, repeal that law.

    June 30, 2012 07:39 am at 7:39 am |
  10. Virgilio Batang

    Senator,I am a senior citizen, this program will save me money,what are you talking about?

    June 30, 2012 07:43 am at 7:43 am |
  11. John

    All you Republican are worry about Is the Big Insurance Company Is going to lose money with this. You Republican never care about the American People ,It all what In It for you Republican and the Rich and Big Business. And the American People are going to show you Republican In NOV.

    June 30, 2012 08:27 am at 8:27 am |
  12. Sorensen

    Who is Barasso??

    June 30, 2012 08:33 am at 8:33 am |
  13. w l jones

    I never hearld say government Rep. healthcare payed by taxpayer for the rest of there life.+ eighteen thousand social securit a year working part time. Enough said.

    June 30, 2012 08:47 am at 8:47 am |
  14. Here we go again

    "With unemployment over 8 % for over 40 straight months, we cannot afford for this tax to stay in place any longer."

    Has anyone had to pay into this over the past 40 months? I thought that was forthcoming. What is he talking about?

    June 30, 2012 08:50 am at 8:50 am |
  15. vic , nashville ,tn

    Sen John Barrasso this is total Lies
    Sen John Barrasso you have government health care so you don’t care,
    Republicans don’t have policy or principle like Dick Cheney support Gay marriage, when it’s come to them one rule for others different rule

    This law affects me BUT it has lot of good stuffs, so I support this law

    June 30, 2012 08:54 am at 8:54 am |
  16. Here we go again

    Barrasso said Republicans will "replace this law with real reforms that actually lower costs and improve access to care."

    That's like Charles Manson ringing your doorbell to tell you he offering a process to make your teenagers better people.

    June 30, 2012 08:55 am at 8:55 am |
  17. Are you kidding me?

    I will never buying into the GOP stance on health care reform. They had their chance to work with the dems to create a bill both sides can agree on. Instead they sat in a corner like a spoiled child because they not want out president to get a win.

    They wasted our time and are engaged in a smear campaign to cover up their own incompetences and bad decision making.

    As a registered republican I am disgusted.

    June 30, 2012 09:02 am at 9:02 am |
  18. k

    And what did Barasso do to solve the "major national problems"? Zilch.... Oh, sorry, he came in the way of every piece of legislation the President wanted to make to help solve the national problems... Dude, get over your ignorance....

    I'm appalled at the stupidity of the uninformed "conservatives" (what are they conserving anyway?) who bury their heads in sands – for them "it's all about ME" – if it works for me, it is good, even it means rest of the world has to suffer.

    June 30, 2012 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  19. cathy

    The insurance/ healthcare crisis has been spiraling out of control for decades now, and when something does get done all we hear is criticism. Plans similar to this, including an individual mandate, were proposed by Republicans in the 1990's. The partisan politics have to end, and Congress needs to start working together for the good of all Americans.

    June 30, 2012 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  20. Maxx

    So, you have no answers of your own, just criticism. Or is it just because Obama did it. So what do you think of Romneycare?

    June 30, 2012 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  21. RSaundersPA

    Most people will agree that there are some parts of the law that need to be "tuned up" and made better. However, it would be a mistake to throw out the baby with the bath water. The law is better than nothing and does indeed fix some major problems.

    June 30, 2012 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  22. Seattle Sue

    Barrasso is a master of twisting the facts. I'm surprised he didn't mention death panels that are supposed to be in the law. During the eight years of Bush, I never saw a health bill come up from the Republicans.

    June 30, 2012 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  23. maf

    Lost, the GOP is lost, they have no ideology other than the tired old mantra of "smaller government" and "no new taxes"!!
    Unfortunately, they have no idea how to turn things around!! If Mitt had a platform to stand on, we would have heard it by now. The only platform the Republicans can put forth is one of doom and gloom, scare and shock, anything that is opposite of what President Obama is doing, even if it goes against ideas they previously supported!! Nordquist and the Tea Party have forced the GOP hand and they have been painting themselves into a very small corner with no escape hatch!!

    Implosion looks good on you and you better have excellent resumes ready as you will need them in a really difficult job market that exists because of your inability to make the process better!!

    June 30, 2012 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  24. Ken

    "Sen John Barrasso called for repeal of President Barack Obama's health reform law, saying it has failed to solve major issues with the U.S. health system". He's correct, but only because the Affordable Care Act does not go into full effect until 2014. Anyone with half a brain should understand that the full effects of the law would not be immediate.

    June 30, 2012 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  25. independent voter

    Tell that to all the millions of people who are now insured. Republicans suck!!

    June 30, 2012 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
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