GOP: Democratic Health Care Bill Amounts to Government System
House Republicans said the newly released Democratic health care reform bill would create an expensive government-run heath care system paid for by those who could least afford it, but they declined to say whether they would introduce a conference alternative. With a copy of the 1,990-page bill stacked in front of him, Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) told reporters Thursday that the Democratic bill would raise the cost of health insurance, kill jobs and eventually bankrupt financially troubled states through the expansion of programs such as Medicaid. “We have better ideas, and we’ll be talking about them over the next week,— Boehner said. Republican Conference Chairman Mike Pence (Ind.) said, “In the coming days we’ll be offering a better choice for the American people to meet the challenge of health care reform in the 21st century.— But Boehner refused to say when or if they intended to introduce alternative health care legislation. “We have a number of ideas that we would like to proffer in this process, and we are not sure how the majority intends to proceed,— Boehner said. “So until we understand how they intend to proceed, it’s pretty difficult for us to have a solid plan.— Democrats have hammered Republicans for weeks for criticizing the Democrats’ heath care agenda while failing to release their own proposal for how to fix the health care system. Republicans say they have been locked out of the legislative process and have repeatedly accused the majority of retreating behind closed doors to craft the bill.