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Engel: GOP Not Waiting for CBO Score Shows Their Health Bill Won't Work

Engel: GOP Not Waiting for CBO Score Shows Their Health Bill Won’t Work

Washington D.C.—Congressman Eliot L. Engel, a top member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, offered the following statement during today’s mark-up of the Republican bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act (as prepared for delivery):

“Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.

“Republicans’ decision to charge ahead on this bill, less than two days after its introduction, is an affront to their constituents who are wondering how the bill would affect them. But it’s also an indication that they’re quite content to break one of the White House’s central promises: the promise to, quote, ‘come up with a new plan that's going to be better health care, for more people, at a lesser cost.’

“The mere fact that this markup is taking place shows that our Republican colleagues either aren’t concerned with providing health care for more people at a lesser cost, or they know they can’t do it. Why? Because the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office has yet to determine how much this bill would cost, or how many Americans it would cover. Without that analysis, there is absolutely no reason to believe that this bill would achieve those goals. Because if it did, Republicans would have held this markup with a readout from CBO in-hand, ready and willing to show Americans how their repeal bill works for them.  

“Now, I’ve heard suggestions that CBO’s process is too lengthy, and that we can’t possibly wait to see a CBO analysis before moving forward.

Republicans have been promising a better way for seven years.

“I have never heard of a CBO analysis taking that long.

“If my colleagues on the other side of the aisle wish to move forward without knowing what their bill costs, or how many Americans it would cover, that is their prerogative. But perhaps it’s time to be upfront about it: they aren’t waiting for a CBO score, either because they aren’t concerned with giving better health care to more people at a lesser cost, or because they know that this bill can’t do it.

“I yield back the balance of my time.”