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House Proceeding 03-04-10 on Mar 4th, 2010 :: 2:02:20 to 2:43:20
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Keith Ellison

2:02:20 to 2:43:20( Edit History Discussion )
Speech By: Keith Ellison

Keith Ellison

2:02:27 to 2:02:47( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: right now. mr. ellison: mr. speaker, i'm keith ellison and here to offer the progressive message, to deliver the progressive message. looking forward to having some other progressive caucus members join me, but in any event we'll be here tonight for a few minutes to talk to america about the progressive vision of america.

Keith Ellison

2:02:48 to 2:03:08( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: america is a great country because people stood forward and had a higher vision of what it could be, yet we came here as a nation and the united states said, you know what? we can have a country where all men and women are created equal, we have to make that happen understand so americans set out on a path to, what, end slavery.

Keith Ellison

2:03:09 to 2:03:29( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: and then exalt the rights of workers and then eliminate gender discrimination and have the women's right to vote and then move on forward to spread the economic prosperity to al people, to make sure that working class men and women during the great depression were able to have the kind of economic whe with all that could see them through a difficult time.

Keith Ellison

2:03:30 to 2:03:51( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: america is a progressive idea. we saw the end of segregation because americans stood up of all races and colors and said, you know, this offends the basic principle of our nation. it wasn't easy, it wasn't pretty, it was real messy and people gave up everything to pursue that ideal but they did. so america is really at the

Keith Ellison

2:03:52 to 2:04:13( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: bottom of progress ofive idea -- progressive idea. no more important than the fight for health care. no more important than the fight for universal health care. and as a member of the progressive caucus i come here as a person who really would love to see universal single-payer health care, the right way to go. but single-payer did not make it

Keith Ellison

2:04:14 to 2:04:34( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: into the debate really this year but important ideas like the public option did and we'rifying for those ideas tooth and nail to the vast very last. progressive message tonight, talking about health care as i have so many weeks hence, but it's an idea that is coming to the floor and there's no time to stop talking about health care

Keith Ellison

2:04:35 to 2:04:56( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: reform now because americans, we've been through a lot of changes, you all remember when the president started off his service, the president started off and said, we're going to move forward on health care, begin some health care summits. and we had a number of conversations as we went through and went forward. and of course as so often happens, members from the other side of the aisle, the

Keith Ellison

2:04:57 to 2:05:17( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: republican caucus, had a lot of complaints but they didn't have many you constructive ideas. we move forward anyway. and we went through this spring where we had literally tens and tens and tens, dozens of community hearings and hearings here on capitol hill about health care reform. we had witnesses come here to

Keith Ellison

2:05:18 to 2:05:38( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: talk about how to bend the cost curve down, how to reduce costs, how to expand coverage. we literally had well over 10 hearings on health care reform. and as i said, we went into the communities and i had a member of community meetings myself and we had this debate right on and up into the beginning of august

Keith Ellison

2:05:39 to 2:06:01( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: and people were telling us, you know, the public option is dead but the public option as you know is not dead. we kept fighting for it and bringing it up and kept rallying americans, mr. speaker, and we just didn't break and we wouldn't bend and we kept the conversation alive. we kept the conversation alive even though we had a very tough economy to deal with, ev though with had to deal with the failing auto industry, even

Keith Ellison

2:06:02 to 2:06:22( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: though we had a financial catastrophe. we understood that getting health care reform right was key to prosperity for the poor, for working class people, for middle class people. so we never really gave it up. i know some people in fact earlier today somebody said, what are you going to talk about tonight on the special order think? said i'm going to talk about health care.

Keith Ellison

2:06:23 to 2:06:45( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: they said, wow, we're sick of talking about that. you know what, we don't have the luxury to be sick of talking about health care reform because right now at this very moment there are people who are facing being cut off health care insurance, people whose medical expenses have gone so high they have to consider bankruptcy in

Keith Ellison

2:06:46 to 2:07:06( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: order to make it and survive economically. there are people who have children getting ready to turn 22. i had a situation where our health care carrier told me on your son's birth way, which should be a happy occasion, he's going to be terminated from your health care policy. this is my own son.

Keith Ellison

2:07:07 to 2:07:27( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: i am many of congress and i am sitting here figuring out my boy who is going from 21 to 22 covered because he's going to be looking for health care coverage in only a few days. americans are going through this all the time. some americans are thinking, wow, i hope i can get to 65 so i can get medicare because then i won't have all these

Keith Ellison

2:07:28 to 2:07:52( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: problems, i will be able to afford health care like i haven't been able to afford it in so many years. americans are in dire straits. so it doesn't make any sense to anyone not talking about health care because americans are not done fighting health care. and so we're here with the congressional progressive caucus.

Keith Ellison

2:07:53 to 2:08:13( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: in is our email. contact us and let us know what ur ideas are. we believe that progress is made through new ideas and we want to hear about it. but we're going to be talking about health care tonight. hopefully be joined by some of our colleagues.

Keith Ellison

2:08:14 to 2:08:35( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: i want to talk about health care and the economy, how these two ideas are linked together. shocking, shocking, shocking, shocking news. how do you like this one, folks? health insurers break record profits as 2.7 million

Keith Ellison

2:08:36 to 2:08:56( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: americans lose coverage. wait a minute. i must be reading this wrong, mr. speaker. health care insurers break profit records as 2.7 million americans lose coverage. you mean they're breaking records, getting more money than they ever got before, as

Keith Ellison

2:08:57 to 2:09:18( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: they're throwing people off coverage? well, that doesn't seem right. you would think that during this time, mr. speaker, of reviewing health care policy that somebody somewhere would have at least the good sense to say, well, maybe we shouldn't throw all these people off at a time when we're making all this money.

Keith Ellison

2:09:19 to 2:09:39( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: it would look back. these be a rigsist folks don't have any chame when it comes to grab more money. -- shame when it comes to grab more money. like those in the financial services industry giving themselves record bonuses as america's banks are -- have enough reserves but aren't lending it out. so small businesses can help

Keith Ellison

2:09:40 to 2:10:01( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: grow our economy. as we're in the middle of a financial cris, they're giving themselves bonuses and they feel put upon and personally attacked because they can't get a gazillion more dollars. health care insurers brk record profits as 2.7 million americans lose coverage.

Keith Ellison

2:10:02 to 2:10:22( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: mr. speaker, i'd just like to show to whoever's looking the report whe i get this information. this report, health care insurers break record profits as 2.7 million americans lose coverage, february, 2010, health care now, health care

Keith Ellison

2:10:23 to 2:10:43( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: for amera now. this is something very important. great report. you can get it on the health care for america now.org website and people need to check it out, mr. speaker, because it's the kind of information that can really help you g you engaged, get you involved and get you moving toward real health care reform.

Keith Ellison

2:10:44 to 2:11:05( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: let me just say -- read a little bit from the report so the americans who are watching can get a taste of this important. th largest health insurance companies, mr. speaker, sail through the worse economic downturn since the great depression to set new industry

Keith Ellison

2:11:06 to 2:11:26( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: profit records in 2009, a feat accomplished by leaving behind 2.7 million americans who had been in private health plans. for consumers who kept their benefits, the insurers raised rates and cut the share of premiums spent on medical care.

Keith Ellison

2:11:27 to 2:11:47( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: executives and shareholders of the five biggest for-profit health insurers, united health group, incorporate rated, aetna, incorporate rated, cigna , corporation, enjoy the combined profit of $12.2

Keith Ellison

2:11:48 to 2:12:09( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: billion, that's $12 billion with a b, in 2009, up 56% from the previous year. it was the best year pour big insurance. wow. wow. that's amazing to me. you would -- these folks coming

Keith Ellison

2:12:10 to 2:12:30( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: down here saying that they got to have the prate insurance go their way so they can survive, well, they're reaping megaprofits. mr. speaker, it's wrong. mr. speaker, we got to do something about it. it's downright unpatriotic. the outsize earnings are a

Keith Ellison

2:12:31 to 2:12:52( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: vid reminder that without comprehensive national health care reform the gatekeepers of our broken health care system will put the short-term interest of wall street before the needs of millions of patients and a national economy plagued by joblessness. i'm not going to read the whole report, mr. speaker, but it is worth it to go on a little further. the 2009 financial report from

Keith Ellison

2:12:53 to 2:13:17( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: the nation's five largest insurance companies revealed that, one, the firms made $12.2 billion, an increase of $4.4 billion or 56% from 2008. four out of five of the companies saw earnings increase with cigna's profits jumping 346%.

Keith Ellison

2:13:18 to 2:13:39( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: cigna's profits jumped 346%. that's pretty good. now, this is -- as americans are losing their health care benefits, as the unemployment is sking, as people are getting in real pain, they're getting more money. the companies provided private insurance coverage to 2.7 million fewer people than the year before. four out of five of the

Keith Ellison

2:13:40 to 2:14:01( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: companies insured fewer people through private coverage. united health alone insured 1.7 fewer people through employer-based and individual coverage. and that's why i'm an advocate of universal single-payer health care. as long as the private insurance market is a player in this thing, they are going to offer the worst at the highest price.

Keith Ellison

2:14:02 to 2:14:23( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: but all but one of the five companies increased the number of people they cover through public insurance programs, medicaid, schip, medicare, united health added 6800 people to public plans. that's me and you. that's the public. the proportion of the premium dollars spent on health care

Keith Ellison

2:14:24 to 2:14:44( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: expenses went down for three of the five firms with the higher proportion going to administrative expenses. and guess what, profits. i know you're shocked. one last paragraph, mr. speaker, so that people can really get a flavor of this thing. i'm hoping the people will really get a handle on this and look into it so that they can

Keith Ellison

2:14:45 to 2:15:05( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: see what's really going on. you can't figure out what's going on by some of these talk show hosts, depending on what station you like to watch, they're not going to tell you the truth. they are going to be busy telling you about death panels and s and say, government's taking over health care.

Keith Ellison

2:15:06 to 2:15:27( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: well, i'd rather have government take over my health care than united group take over my health care. i would, and i think a lot of americans would probably agree. some may not, but i think most americans expect the government o make sure that the private corporations in the health care business play fair with the american people. going back to the report.

Keith Ellison

2:15:28 to 2:15:49( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: the shedding of 2.7 million americans from private health care plans is part of the long-term shifting of responsibility for the care of miions of the sick, older and lower income customers to taxpayers supported government health programs such as medicare and state children's health insurance program. state and federal programs have increasingly been hiring big

Keith Ellison

2:15:50 to 2:16:10( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: insurers to manage their care. well, i think we need to not do that. we need to do something -- we need to get a real plan that will provide some real competition with these people like a public option. or better yet, have single payer health care and st get the private market out of the health care business and allow private doctors to take care of

Keith Ellison

2:16:11 to 2:16:32( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: patients as opposed to private insurance companies, wch, mr. speaker, i will say don't really add value to the health care equation. what do these people do? they move paper around. they don't see patients. they don't diagnosis. they don't treat. what do they do? what do they add? do they get one aspirin?

Keith Ellison

2:16:33 to 2:16:54( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: do they go get -- do they put gauze or dress wounds? they don't do any of that. i think they are mo or less a pair asite on the system -- a pair site on the -- parasite on the system. so here's a little bit more from inside of the report.

Keith Ellison

2:16:55 to 2:17:17( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: faced with such onerous costs, many customers are winding up uninsured. health insurance premiums have risen so high that experts forecast that 52 million americans will be without coverage this year. now, mr. speaker, i know and you know that the number we always toss around is 47 million americans don't have health care.

Keith Ellison

2:17:18 to 2:17:40( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: well, if that's what you say, you're wrong. 52 million americans -- we're approaching 52 million americans without health care, and that's at a time we're in the very middle of a debate around reforming health care. left alone, the purchase of health care plans directly from private insurers, many will have no choice but to remain uninsured or to buy cheap policies with inadequate

Keith Ellison

2:17:41 to 2:18:02( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: benefits that leave them underinsured and at financial risk should they have a serious accident or illness. now, one little fact that americans should know is that 60% -- 60% of all bankruptcy

Keith Ellison

2:18:03 to 2:18:23( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: filings are directly related to medical debt. think about that. a broken health care system is driving americans to bankruptcy anto poverty. and as th happens, our industry doesn't seem to care much at all because they're

Keith Ellison

2:18:24 to 2:18:44( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: getting theirs, what seems to be their only obsession. well, mr. speaker, i may return to this topic in a little while, but i want you to -- but i want you to know and i want the american people to know this is something, this is a problem that must be addressed. this is not a time for cynicism, mr. speaker. this is a time for action. this is not a time to say what can happen.

Keith Ellison

2:18:45 to 2:19:05( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: this is the time to make something happen. this is not a time to quit. this is a time to act. and if americans act now, mr. speaker, we can get that public insurance option. we can get that public option. you know, last week when i was talking we had only about 24 senators sign onto a letter saying they would support a public option.

Keith Ellison

2:19:06 to 2:19:27( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: last time i checked we were up to 35. the question is, is your senator on the letter? we got to get 50 on there because if we get 50 senators on a letter to say they support the public option through reconciliation rules we will have that of and despite people saying the public option is dead it would jump back to life

Keith Ellison

2:19:28 to 2:19:48( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: just like the folks. and i would be surpr who say no to the -- to it. those for the public option who are like me and those against the public option like them, we have the same reason for the position that we take.

Keith Ellison

2:19:49 to 2:20:10( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: they oppose the public option and i suppor it for the same reason. it's going to cut into corporate profits and give more people health care. that's why we don't agree. they want to take more from the american people. i want to gi more the american people. so we al agree. but the public option can succeed if we just don't stop. if passed through the house,

Keith Ellison

2:20:11 to 2:20:32( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: 70% of americans support it, we got a climbing number of senators getting on it every day. i want to thank senator sherrod brown. you know, i think president sherrod brown sounds pretty good. i'd like to see him think about that. and we got president -- senator kristen gillibrand, another great american.

Keith Ellison

2:20:33 to 2:20:55( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: and we have other senators joing every day who say we are not going, we are going to break free of this strangle hold that's been around the u.s. senate and we are going to really do something good for the american people. i just want to say hats of to them and say i appreciate the hard work that they're doing. mr. speaker, i got another board that i want to show to

Keith Ellison

2:20:56 to 2:21:17( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: the people here. and this one is quite sobering, quite sobering. it's another big number, mr. speaker. and it's the kind of number that really, really, really -- we almost don't want to have to mention it but if you don't

Keith Ellison

2:21:18 to 2:21:39( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: mention it you do a disservice to the memory. this board right here -- i want to put it in the camera shot. says 45,000 -- 45,000 americans die every year because they're uninsured.

Keith Ellison

2:21:40 to 2:22:00( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: now, think about?? -- this number -- think about this number as you think about this number. 2.7 million americans lose coverage. because of no coverage, 45,000 americans die every year. so people are literally dying because they don't have health

Keith Ellison

2:22:01 to 2:22:22( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: care coverage and not one, not two, not somebody herer there, 45,000 people. this is a national disgrace, mr. speaker. it must be changed. we've got to do something about it. it's got to be something that is a national priority. we've got to extend coverage to people and we've got to do it

Keith Ellison

2:22:23 to 2:22:43( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: in a way that is cost effective and does not -- so that we can extend as much coverage as we possibly can to as many people as we possibly can. this is the reality of the situation. we've got to fight for this and we've got to understand that this fight for health care reform is a life and death fight, mr. speaker. it's not just something that

Keith Ellison

2:22:44 to 2:23:04( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: one side would prefer and some other side would kind of not prefer. that's not what we're talking about. we are talking about a life and death situation that unless we're able to move forward on health care reform, americans die. this number 45rk,000, looks like a bigumber. here in washington we throw big

Keith Ellison

2:23:05 to 2:23:25( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: numbers around all the time. 2.7 billion, 45,000, all these numbers, numbers, numbers. they jumble the min one of these 45,000 is the mother of someone. one of these 45,000 is a child of someone. one of these 45,000 is a young man in the prime of his life whose family is dependent on

Keith Ellison

2:23:26 to 2:23:47( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: his income one of these 45,000 is a small business owner. one of these 45,000 is someone who somebody loves. this is a national emergency, mr. speaker. i don't need to tell you if we're talking about losing this many people a year in conflict

Keith Ellison

2:23:48 to 2:24:09( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: or war, there's no doubt we'd have a national debate and outrage over what we're going to do about it. it's not less important because it happens silently in hospital rooms and bedrooms and in houses. it's just as important and we've got to do something about it. now, mr. speaker, i want to

Keith Ellison

2:24:10 to 2:24:30( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: talk about -- talk more about health care but i want to lay out a few other impacts, since we laid that one out. let me put it back up, it's relevant to what i'm about to say. not only do 45,000 americans die every year because they're uninsured, but this year alone, an estimated 1.5 million

Keith Ellison

2:24:31 to 2:24:54( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: americans will declare bankruptcy because of a lack of health care. or health care expenses. studies in recent years suggest that more than 60% of people who go bankrupt are capsized by medical bills. ed me -- bankruptcies due to

Keith Ellison

2:24:55 to 2:25:15( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: medical bills increased 40% in six years. -- increased 62% in six years. most of those who file bankruptcy were middle class, well-educated homeowners, according to a report published in august of 2009 by the

Keith Ellison

2:25:16 to 2:25:36( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: american journal of medicine. i'm not sure warren - unless you're warren buffett or bill gates, you're one illness away from financial ruin in this country. that's what this report said. private insurance offers very little protection against

Keith Ellison

2:25:37 to 2:25:57( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: medical bankruptcy and that's the major finding of the study. over all 3rk/4 of the people with medically related bankruptcy had health insurance. let me tell you that again. some people you know, sometimes in our country, you know, this is the most generous, giving country, there are a lot of people with the best of intentions, but all americans know not everybody is like that.

Keith Ellison

2:25:58 to 2:26:18( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: for some who think, i don't care about people, i only care about myself and my family, well if those people don't have insurance, that's their problem. probably somethi they did to deserve that. shocking as it is, there are a lot of people who think like

Keith Ellison

2:26:19 to 2:26:39( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: that and the fact is, is that the statistic of these people going into bankruptcy because of medical debt is talking about folk whors middle class vand jobs. this is a shocking statistic. 3/4 of the people with medically related bankruptcy had health insurance. they had health insurance. and they still went down. why?

Keith Ellison

2:26:40 to 2:27:00( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: lifetime caps. because they got dropped. because of co-pays and escalating premiums. all these things. that was actually the predominant problem in patients studied. 78% of them had health insurance but many of them were

Keith Ellison

2:27:01 to 2:27:21( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: bankrupted anyway because there were gaps in their coverage like co-payments, dedubblingtables and other circumstances. other people had private insurance but got so sick they lost their job and lost their insurance. we'll return to that in a moment. health care cost is a percentage of gross domestic

Keith Ellison

2:27:22 to 2:27:42( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: product. -- health care cost as a percentage of gross domestic product has increased. in march, 2008, i have a chart here which i'll explain to you, i don't have a blowup of which illustrates that we pay more than every other cubtry for health care and the other countries cover the entire

Keith Ellison

2:27:43 to 2:28:03( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: population. so, for example, in the united states, in 1970, health care was 7% of gross domestic product. today it's 15.3%. in gross domestic product, now it's 9.9%.

Keith Ellison

2:28:04 to 2:28:24( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: more than five percentage points lower than ours. in germany, health care was 6.2% in1970, grew to 10.6%. 5% lower than us. the u.k., 1970, it was 4.5% in 1970rk now it's 8.1%. we have expanded this because it makes somebody a whole lot

Keith Ellison

2:28:25 to 2:28:45( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: of dough. you've got to think about this and we've got to do something about it. from 2000 to 2008, workers' health insurance premiums shot up more than five times faster than their wages. the average cost of family coverage in the workplace went from $6,672 in the year 2000 to

Keith Ellison

2:28:46 to 2:29:08( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: $12,,000 in 2007. that's a 78% increase. it's eating family income. at the same time, average wages rose only about 15%, which means that they significantly outstripped the cost of -- the cost of health care outstrped american pay.

Keith Ellison

2:29:09 to 2:29:30( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: so -- may i ask the speaker, how much time do we have left? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman has approximately 30 minutes remaining. mr. ellison: thank you. i just want to speak a little bit about the importance of financial choices that americans are having to make, bankruptcy or not bankruptcy.

Keith Ellison

2:29:31 to 2:29:52( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: get the coverage or not. what are you going to do? now that you're out of work, what are you going to do? difficult choices. i want to spend a few minutes talking about the important issue of the public option because i think that a lot of peop are thinking, you know, now that the public option seems to be back in play, more senators are supporting it, already passed through the

Keith Ellison

2:29:53 to 2:30:15( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: house, the president said he was in favor of it, people are thinking, maybe it will happen now. this is no time to quit the fight for the public option. in fact, it's time to accelerate your energy around the public option. mr. speaker, it wouldn't be a bad thing if people had rallies and community forums and petions for the public option thefplg public option is a

Keith Ellison

2:30:16 to 2:30:36( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: great choice, i'm an advocate of universal single payer health care but the public option is a good choice if we can't get that far. currently, in 34 states, 75% o the insurance market is controlled by five or fewer companies, mr. speaker. many areas of the country are dominated by just one or two private organizations. what that means, mr. speaker,

Keith Ellison

2:30:37 to 2:30:58( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: is that americans don't have much choice. we're dealing with highly concentrated markets and a public option would give people in these highly concentrated markets more choice. competition. again in 34 state, 75% of the insurance market is controlled by five or fewer companies. in alabama, almost 90% is

Keith Ellison

2:30:59 to 2:31:19( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: controlled by just one company. now, is that a monopoly or what? in addition, the public option would provide competition for private insurance companies to keep them honest. so the public option is -- it offers choice and competion and also lowers costs. that's the funny thing about it. you'd think it would have a lot

Keith Ellison

2:31:20 to 2:31:40( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: of republican support because it reduces cost. but we know that existing public options like medicare and medicaid consistently have lower administrative costs than their private insurance counterparts because they don't have any competition. why should they worry about lowering costs. according to the commonwealth

Keith Ellison

2:31:41 to 2:32:01( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: fund, the cost for medicare and medicaid were 5% for medicare, 8% for medicaid. if you look at the top five health insurance company, their administerive costs for over 17%. triple. it's crazy. with the insurance market controlled by fewer and fewer companies in more and more states, there's little

Keith Ellison

2:32:02 to 2:32:24( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: incentive to lower costs. also, as one former insurance executive testified before congress, insurance companies are not only encouraged to find reasons to drop seriously il people, they are rewarded for it. burea coupled with multimillion dollar c.e.o. salaries and

Keith Ellison

2:32:25 to 2:32:45( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: bonuses provides high cost for american families and a lack of competition leaves them no reason to change their policies. competition always improves -- it doesn't always, but often improves quality and threver public option will help consumers get a better coverage for the same amount of money as private insurance. there's some things people have

Keith Ellison

2:32:46 to 2:33:06( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: been saying, mr. speaker, about the public option, that are not true. one of those things is the idea of the public option bei government takeover or even a government-run program. you know what, the fact is that the public option would be administered by the department of health and human services but it would be with private

Keith Ellison

2:33:07 to 2:33:27( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: doctors and private providers out there. it would still be people dealing with their own private doctor. the idea that the mandated health insurance is a new tax is also false. it's not true. what a public option really means is the government would help cover the high cost of insurance for americans while bringing those costs down

Keith Ellison

2:33:28 to 2:33:49( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: through competition, access, and choice. without health care insurance reform, however, we can expect the problems that exist today only to get worse. so, mr. speaker, i want to now just talk about the fact that we've been hearing a lot about the idea of reconciliation. there might be some americans saying, reconciliation what is

Keith Ellison

2:33:50 to 2:34:10( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: that about? is that like how me and my neighbor have been feuding are going to try to get along? not really, though that would be a good thing. in this case, reconciliation i just some special budgetary rules that are passed through congress that allow congress to pass law without -- by getting

Keith Ellison

2:34:11 to 2:34:32( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: around the filibuster rules in the senate. that's what it is. there are reconciliation rules in the house and the senate, but in the senate they have rules that you've got to have 60 people to end debate so you can vote on something. reconciliation and -- allows us to get around those rules and it's a good thing.

Keith Ellison

2:34:33 to 2:34:55( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: it's a simple up or down vote by more than half the house and senate should be enough to send the president final improvements to health care reform measure that we've been talking about for a year. simple majority vote would no be used to reform health care -- a simple majority vote would not be used to reform the

Keith Ellison

2:34:56 to 2:35:16( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: health care system just to clear limited irovements to the health reform bill whh already passed the senate and a supermajority in a similar form in the house. but not exactly the same. reconciliation is part of the normal legislative process, mr. speaker, and it's been used 22 times over the last 30 years. 16 times by republican-led

Keith Ellison

2:35:17 to 2:35:37( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: senate. nearly 2/3 of the time, republican presidents have signed reconciliation bills. not all the time. democrats have used it too. but certain times, reconciliation was used, for example, was to enact a law, a health reform bill called coberasm everybody know what is cobra is. cobra is what allows you to maintain your health insurance

Keith Ellison

2:35:38 to 2:35:58( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: after you lose your job. this is a law that lets employees just keep their employer's health insurance after they left their job and this bill was passed through reconciliation in 1985 and passed into law under ronald reagan. in fact, the r in cobra

Keith Ellison

2:35:59 to 2:36:19( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: actually stands for reconciliation. isn't that something? schip, bipartisan state children's health insurance program passed with reconciliation in 1997. reconciliation include a

Keith Ellison

2:36:20 to 2:36:40( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: hospice benefit, benefit karin colluding cancer screening and the way medicare pays doctors and health care professionals. also the law requiring emergency rooms to screen medicare and medicare patients regards will of their ability to pay was part of the 1985 reconciliation measure. don't think reconciliation is something new. there are people on the television and radio say, oh,

Keith Ellison

2:36:41 to 2:37:03( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: my god, the democrats are using reconciliation. of course we are. it's a normal legislative tool used many times before and there's nothing unusual about it. . reconciliation was used for the

Keith Ellison

2:37:04 to 2:37:26( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: america people that wasn't that good. i just want to wrap up. so if any of my republican colleagues that want to get started, this would be a good idea to start thinking about that. i want to talk a litt bit about because so much of the pain people are suffering through

Keith Ellison

2:37:27 to 2:37:47( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: lack of health care and lack of health care reform is related to the fact that they're not working now. you lose your job, you lose your health care. cobra, yeah, you can pay out of yourwn pocket if you lose your job, but you stil have to have money to pay that. so, i just want to say, last

Keith Ellison

2:37:48 to 2:38:09( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: thursday, the house unanimously passed the emergency legislation extending a range of programs that expired this weekend. and so, these things were included, unemployment benefits, health insurance for the unemployed, satellite tv, delay

Keith Ellison

2:38:10 to 2:38:30( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: in cuts for physician payments, flood insurance, things like that. and mr. speaker, it just concerns me that we have had one republican senator who upuntil a few days ago was blocking the passage of an emergency measure despite serious consequences for families. i went to my own district and

Keith Ellison

2:38:31 to 2:38:52( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: asked people to raise their voices about the action that senator bunning was taking because it was inflicting a lot of pain around the country. according to the department of labor, the expiration of unemployment benefits caused 100,000 people to lose their benefits and 400,000 people will

Keith Ellison

2:38:53 to 2:39:13( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: lose their benefits, including 4,300 people in kentucky if senator bunning does president drop his opposition. jobless americans will lose cobra subsidies, letting the high and transit programs lapse

Keith Ellison

2:39:14 to 2:39:34( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: will shut down projects this week in highway reimbursements and transit grants to states and urban areas, endangering 32,000 jobs, anti-drunk driving efforts and highway projects. history knows that senator

Keith Ellison

2:39:35 to 2:39:55( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: bunning came to an acommodation and that's good. but the fact that the senator held it up, to me is an example of how important it is to really understand who is not working for the american people and who is. democrats are here trying to extend unemployment, extend

Keith Ellison

2:39:56 to 2:40:16( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: cobra, help americans make it through tough times and other people are obstructing and holding things up. the american people deserve to know who is fighting for their economic livelihood and who's not. fact is senator bunning actually

Keith Ellison

2:40:17 to 2:40:38( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: said, it could be argued, unemployment insurance is a disincentive for work because people are being paid, even though they're not working. it could be argued that unemployment insurance is a disincentive for work because people are being paid even

Keith Ellison

2:40:39 to 2:41:02( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: though they're not working. that's pretty sad. the fact is that is senator jim bunning, republican of kentucky. i want people to kep it in mind what they're dealing with and what they're up against and who they're up against. so, the senate ended up passing the bill.

Keith Ellison

2:41:03 to 2:41:23( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: voted 78-19 on tuesday night to pass legislation extending unemployment benefits, highway funding and other programs for one month, bringingthe one-man crusade to filibuster the bil. the fact is, the filibuster resulted in thousands of federal workers being furloughed and

Keith Ellison

2:41:24 to 2:41:45( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: interruption of unemployment benefits. it hurt people, people that are without money because of this. and that was incredibly unfortunate, but i think americans in this great democracy of ours, you can express yourself at the ballot box and let people know that and

Keith Ellison

2:41:46 to 2:42:09( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: let people know what happened, how it happened and who did it. i just want to mention, mr. speaker, that over 200,000 jobless workers will lose unemployment benefits this week or are scheduled to lose unemployment benefits last week and it didn't happen because we narrowly avoided it.

Keith Ellison

2:42:10 to 2:42:31( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: there was a break, a lapse. federal employees were furloughed. and i want to kep that in mind. mr. speaker, as i begin to wind down, i just want to say, there is a group of members of congress who have a progressive vision for america. the progressive vision for america is an america where the government actually tes

Keith Ellison

2:42:32 to 2:42:52( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: responsibility for making sure the economy works for everybody. we have civil rights and human rights for women, people of color, working people, people who live in rural areas, where the country literally works for everyone and not just the few

Keith Ellison

2:42:53 to 2:43:16( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: and where al men and women are created equal with certain unalienable rights. we want to offer educational opportunities by saying that the military budget is expanded way out of control and need to put more energy into diplomacy around the world. a progressive vision in which we

Keith Ellison

2:43:17 to 2:43:21( Edit History Discussion )

Keith Ellison: say that america should use its strength to help confer those

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