June 30th, 2012
06:00 AM ET
11 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. Wanderer

    "It is a law that is GOOD for patients, it is bad for the Tea Party and the GOP who care for the riches and big businesses, and it's terrible for the riches and big businesses because they don’t want to be fair tax payers," Mr. Barrasso should have said that in the GOP weekly address because the majority of Americans are believing it that way.

    June 30, 2012 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  2. Tony in Maine

    It won't be fullt implemented for a couple of years you screaming moron. Saying it hasn't worked is like saying the runners lost before the race started because they didn't cross the finish line.

    June 30, 2012 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  3. Abe

    Look what kind of benefits and medical care you get at the expense of the voters. Shame on you for suggesting to repeal Obama care.Instead of going against what this president is trying to accomplish you get back to the real issue and the need to realize everyone should be equally treated and equal medical care given to everyone. If you are afraid taxes will go up why do not you give up half of your salary. After all the voters put you in office and what are they getting in return. Think about it.

    June 30, 2012 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  4. Jeettu

    I think we should propose a bill that requires every senate and Hourse republican and their staff to buy health insurance as everyone else does, out of their own pocket and require them to pay their medical expenses themselves. In addiiton, just as in any other busines, when an employee does not produce, they are demoted, get reduced salary or get fired, we should develop a system where by these folks in the US Congress get paid only if they produce results for the American people; otherwise, they get no salary and are fired (means recalled by people). I see that while others in the country are losing their jobs, homes, and other benefits, these people in US Congress seem to be getting rich and also do not produce any results. For example, in place of working to fix the problems with Energy, edcuation, immigration, jobs, economy, these republicans are busy talking about the healthcare reform law and the contempt charge to satisfy their own egos. Just yesterday, speaker of the house was asked the question: why don't to change what can be improved in the healthcare law and keep those aspects which are popular and help people, he replied not to do so, instead, he said he wants to repeal the whole thing. He did not provide any alternative to solve the problem either.

    It is time to show these folks in US Congress that we want them to be responsible just like anyone else in business that they so much admire. Therefore, let us fire all these republicans in November elections and show them that the power to make decisions belong to the prople and we are taking that on.

    June 30, 2012 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  5. Logic N LA

    To be clear, what the court said was since this penalty for noncompliance was under the IRS, this was considered part of the tax code and therefore could be a national mandate. The PENALTY- not a tax – will only be charged to those that do not get healthcare. with over 250 million previously insured, and an additional 6 million added since the law was voted on, there are only 24 million poeple left to insure and that MAY be subject to the penalty. And with assistance to pay the premium for those that can't afford it, there is no reason not to comply.
    Don't buy into the lies being told you.

    June 30, 2012 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  6. Rupert Murdoch = Josef Goebbels

    Barasso says, "it's bad for patients." -Bad for patients to have health insurance? Really?

    He says, "it's bad for nurses." -the National Nurses United union has endorsed it as a good start, though they'd prefer Medicare for all.

    He says, "it's bad for doctors." -the American Medical Association has endorsed it, though they'd prefer a single payer, Medicare for all system.

    He says, "it's bad for taxpayers." -only if you can afford health insurance (you make over 400% of the poverty level) but you choose not to purchase it, and you're getting a tax refund. The other 98% of us won't be "taxed" anything extra, at all.

    He says, " we'll hire more IRS agents, but won't do anything about the shortage of nurses and doctors." -the IRS is a govt agency. It's up to the private sector to train more doctors and nurses, and up to the "job-creators" to hire them.

    He says, "we'll replace it with something else, and we'll be transparent about it." -Republicans aren't known for their transparency. Or for their compassion for the sick, elderly, unemployed, or poor. Forgive my skepticism, Barasso.

    June 30, 2012 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  7. Larry in Houston

    It sounds like another Loudmouth – besides the 5 that we've already got . (the other 4 are : Boehner / Cantor / McConnel / Grassley / Hatch ) It's amazing that Just 4 or 5 states are in Play – at almost every election, the sunshine state / the buckeye state / the keystone state / Virginia & Utah.

    June 30, 2012 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  8. Flagship, NC

    Members of the Senate and the House have substantial healthcare programs, yet care little about the rest of us getting affordable health insurance. This law was made so that those without health insurance will not go to the hospital any time they want and then not have to pay!!!!
    Why are the Republicians fighting this law?

    June 30, 2012 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  9. sayer

    Marine1978, The military's healthcare is not changing because of Obamacare. Stop lying.

    June 30, 2012 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  10. sayer

    Eveyone please check the facts for yourself before you believe anything on the comment board! People are outright lying!!!

    June 30, 2012 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  11. beevee

    Sen Barrasso needs some grey matter in his brain. is he not getting it. The supreme court ruling on this matter is over. Accept it and move on to help america not your party or the rich businesses who are suppporting you to tilt things to their benefit so they can get richer and doll out a few bucks your way as well while the rest of america is struggling.

    June 30, 2012 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |

    The unhinged GOBP are back to their lying ways. They were smug enough to think that the ruling would favor them. Now they think that their Frankenstein monster teabaggers will save them in November when the teabaggers hate Mitt(I have nothing)McCain.

    June 30, 2012 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  13. paul

    Republicans know the health care law, once fully implemented, will be immensely popular. Thus, they want to repeal it now before it fully takes effect. Suggestion to all Republicans: Give up your tax payer paid healthcare and live like the rest of us so you can really feel what it is like to get bills from hospital. My daughter has been denied insurance because of medical reasons was just billed $4000 for a 15 minute procedure. Thank you president Obama for your courage.

    June 30, 2012 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  14. James

    Marine 1078 – military personal who are wounded in combat or on deployment already are covered for free under the warrior program set up by congress and created by John McCain. Now very few republicans and no tea party congressman voted for it they voted against it

    June 30, 2012 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  15. Phil Thomas

    Marine what are you talking about ? It kills me how uninformed you clowns are, congress disband your pension for five years of work and your health care coverage until you can come up with something just like you told the auto unions a few years ago. If it killed Detriot pensions can't be helping the US government. You prey on the uninformed, what is so wrong a bout requiring health care, did people stop getting sick. Have we not always paid the bills ? Lastly who cares what senator Barasso from Wyoming has to say ? Tis based through every check and balance in government sorry you couldn't give your lobbyist and special interest group a return on their invest Johnny Barraso

    June 30, 2012 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  16. Larry L

    Just another useless Republican in the Senate. They will sell their soul to prevent anything good from happening during President Obama's tenure. Ironic that most of the current law is directly from a previous Republican plan!

    June 30, 2012 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
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