MONDAY, OCTOBER 19TH, 2009 AT 12:35 PM
Word from the White House: Republican Leaders' Plan to "Delay, Define, and Derail"
Posted by Jesse Lee
It's no secret that institutions of all stripes focus their communications on certain messages day to day. We thought it would all be a little more open and transparent if we went ahead and published what our focus will be for the day, along with any related articles, documents, or reports.
Supporting report: "Health Care Reform: The Perils of Inaction and the Promise of Effective Action," the Business Roundtable, 9/29/09
Supporting article: "GOP Launches Strategy to Trip Up Health Bill," Roll Call, 10/19/09
Talking Points: Insurance Companies' Last-Ditch Defense of the Status Quo
· For decades – even as rising health care costs have unleashed havoc on families, businesses, and the economy – insurance companies have done everything in their considerable power to prevent reform.
· Now – as we're closer to reform than ever before – the insurance industry is rolling out the big guns and breaking open their massive war chest for one last fight to save the status quo.
o They're filling the airwaves with deceptive and dishonest ads.
o They're flooding Capitol Hill with lobbyists and campaign contributions.
o And they're funding studies designed to mislead the American people.
· The evidence is clear. The status quo is unsustainable.
o In the past decade, premiums have doubled.
o Over the past few years, total out of pocket costs for people with insurance rose by a third.
o A new report for the Business Roundtable – a non-partisan group that represents the CEOs of major companies – found that without significant reform, health care costs for these employers and their employees will well more than double again over the next decade.
· And despite the insurance companies' misleading claims that reform will cause premiums to rise, the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office found that reforms will lower premiums in a new insurance exchange while offering consumer protections that will limit out-of-pocket costs and prevent discrimination based on pre-existing conditions.
· So while we welcome a healthy debate and the opportunity to defend our proposals, we will not abide those who would bend the truth – or break it – to score political points and stop our progress as a country.
· There remain significant details to work out. But today reform is closer – and more necessary – than ever before. So we urge every member of Congress to stand against the power plays and political ploys – and to stand up on behalf the American people who sent us to Washington to do their business.
Talking Points: Republican Leaders' Plan to "Delay, Define, and Derail" Reform Unmasked
· Republican leaders in Congress have, unfortunately, decided to join the insurance industry in their last-ditch stand to protect the status quo.
· A new article in Roll Call today unmasks their "comprehensive political strategy to delay, define, and derail" reform.
· The article warns that Republican leaders will resort to the time-honored tactic of attempting to stall reform to death – raising arbitrary and disingenuous hurdles under the guise of wanting further debate, when in reality they have no intention of offering constructive proposals.
· It also sheds light on their intention to continue joining the insurance companies in misleading Americans about what reform will mean for them.
o Republican leaders intend to repeat their claims that reform "will raise insurance premiums on individuals and families, while failing to lower the overall amount of money that the U.S. spends on health care… even though the nonpartisan CBO predicted the [Senate Finance Committee] bill would reduce the deficit and lower the cost curve, even as it extends coverage to millions of uninsured Americans."
· The status quo Republican leaders and the insurance companies are fighting so hard to defend is unsustainable for American families, businesses, and the country as a whole.
o They're fighting to allow insurers to continue discriminating against those who have preexisting conditions and to continue dropping or watering down coverage when you get sick and need it most.
o They're fighting to defend a system that has seen premiums double over the past decade and will see them double again over the next decade.
o They're fighting to protect insurance industry profits while millions of Americans are one illness or injury from losing everything and thousands are losing their insurance each day.
· So while we remain committed to working with those in both parties who have good-faith proposals about how to strengthen the final reform bill, we will not stand idly by in the face of false accusations aimed to score political points or maintain the status quo at all costs.