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Senate Proceeding on Mar 9th, 2010 :: 0:44:35 to 1:01:10
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Barbara Boxer

0:44:35 to 1:01:10( Edit History Discussion )
Speech By: Barbara Boxer

Barbara Boxer

0:44:41 to 0:45:02( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: quorum mrs. boxer: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from california. mrs. boxer: i call be dispensed with. the presiding officer: wowcts. the presiding officer: without objection. mrs. boxer: i know that you and i and others in this chamber are focused like a laser beam on getting this economy turned around. and although we see some promising sig, for example, in my state of california, it turns

Barbara Boxer

0:45:03 to 0:45:25( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: out that last month 32,000 new jobs were created. we stillre not moving quickly enough on the jobs front. and that's why i'm particularly pleased that leader reid is focused on jobs, jobs, jobs, and we're going to finish, hopefully, the bill that's before us, which is very clit cal to jobs, and then we're

Barbara Boxer

0:45:26 to 0:45:50( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: going to move on to the f.a. reauthorization, which is the federal aviation administration authorization, which is going to create 160,000 new jobs as we modernize our nation's airports, and then we're going to so forth and for other purposes a brief moment and take up the "hire"

Barbara Boxer

0:45:51 to 0:46:14( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: act, h-i-r-e act, that was passed over in the house. that will save 1 million jobs. we can't play politics with the highway trust fund, and the nation needs us to build our highways, our bridges, our roads. so we're doing the right thing.

Barbara Boxer

0:46:15 to 0:46:36( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: and there is one piece of unfinished business that is directly reemented t related to our economy. there is no question that health care is directly related to our economy. and we need to fix a health care system that is broken. now, i have listened to my republican friends on this for a

Barbara Boxer

0:46:37 to 0:46:57( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: very long, long time. and they have a message for the american people, and i'd like to disstill that message -- distill that message. that message is, when it comes to health care reform, when it comes to fixing the health care system here's the republican message: be afraid.

Barbara Boxer

0:46:58 to 0:47:22( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: be very afraid. mr. president, that's not the american way. when there's a challenge in front of us, we act. we don't cower in the corner in fear. and i think it's important to note that if one were to be fraid, it's not of fixing -- if one were to be afraid, it's not

Barbara Boxer

0:47:23 to 0:47:44( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: of fixing the system -- if you like your health care system, you can keep it, but we're going to make sure it is affordable and 0 more people can attain it -- if there is one thing to be afraid of, it is doing nothing, the status quo. let me tell you why. every day in america, 14,000 people lose their health insurance. it could be any one of us for

Barbara Boxer

0:47:45 to 0:48:06( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: any of a number of reasons. we might lose our job, our spouse might lose their job, and that means we can't have health insurance anymore. an insance company can rescind your policy, they can walk away and say, oh, by the way, 10 years ago when you signed up, you didn't mention that you had one blood test that was a little awry and, therefore, we're

Barbara Boxer

0:48:07 to 0:48:28( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: walking away from you. you may have a cap on your policy and reach that cap, mr. president, because you didn't read the fine print and you're out; it's over. mr. president, anyne of us could be one of the 14,000 people who loses health insurance. oh, not in the senate. oh, no.

Barbara Boxer

0:48:29 to 0:48:49( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: every one of my colleagues, we're protected because we have a system that, yes, is a public option. the rules are made by the federal employee health benefit corporation and people can't mistreat us. but for some reason my colleagues on the other side of the aisle don't seem to feel

Barbara Boxer

0:48:50 to 0:49:10( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: it's fair to give that kind of protection to ordinary families and their scaring people to death. well, let me say again, if there's anything to be afraid of, it's doing nothing. because you could be one of the 14,000 people -- in my state about 1,400 every day -- who

Barbara Boxer

0:49:11 to 0:49:32( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: se their insurance. you could be one of the people who goes bankrupt because of a health care crisis. mr. president, 66% of bankruptcies in america today are directly linked to a health care crisis and most of "people" have insurance, have -- and most of those people have insurance,

Barbara Boxer

0:49:33 to 0:49:53( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: have insurance. i read a little story. i don't know if it's true, that sarah palin shall the former republican vice-presidential nominee, said that when she was young, her family went to canada to get their health care. i don't know if it's true. but i find it interesting, if it

Barbara Boxer

0:49:54 to 0:50:15( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: is true. here's the point: doing nothing is not on option. -- is not an option. let me tell you what else is happening. in california a company, anthem insurance, has increased rates in the individual market by,

Barbara Boxer

0:50:16 to 0:50:36( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: hold on to your hat, 29%. 29%. imagine, in one clip. and this leads me to a study that was done by a nonpartisan group and that study showed that if we do nothing, which is in fact my republican friends'

Barbara Boxer

0:50:37 to 0:50:57( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: idea, because they say start over. well, we started this under teddy roosevelt. it's time we acted. but this nonpartisan group said, if we do nothing, the average cost of insurance would be 45% of your income by 2016.

Barbara Boxer

0:50:58 to 0:51:19( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: can you imagine? and my colleagues on the other side say, well, if you go with the president's bill and the democrats' bill, insurance rates will go up. the fact is they won't go up if you have the same policy. if you have a better policy, they may go up a little over

Barbara Boxer

0:51:20 to 0:51:41( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: time, but they're never going to be -- never, never, never -- 45% of your income. and there are two reasons for that. number one, we're goi to watch insurance companies like a hawk -- and that's the right thing to do. you know, they're not selling us something that is a luxury. they're selling us a product

Barbara Boxer

0:51:42 to 0:52:03( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: that is a matter of life or death, and we ought to look over their shoulder a little bit more to make sure they're fair. so that's one reason. the other reason is, we're going to help people,ed middle class, up $80,000 a year, we're going to make sure you get tax credits to help you pay for your premium.

Barbara Boxer

0:52:04 to 0:52:25( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: that's a big deal. that's a good thing. so, remember, when the republicans say, be very afraid, don't be veryfraid of reform; be very afraid of doing nothing. that's a reason to be very afraid. then my republican friends will

Barbara Boxer

0:52:26 to 0:52:47( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: say, they didn't take any of our ideas. well, it turns out, when the bill was being written in the senate, well over 100 amendments -- i think it was 160 amendments of the republicans were incorporated into the work of the "help" committee. oh, that's not good enough for them. we took 160 of their ideas, why

Barbara Boxer

0:52:48 to 0:53:09( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: can't they take an equal amount of our ideas? why can't we work together, come to the table across party lines? it doesn't work that way. then the president had them up for, i thought, a very instructive meeting, and the president took three or four more very good ideas from republicans, dealing with

Barbara Boxer

0:53:10 to 0:53:30( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: h.s.a.'s, dealing with medical malpractice, dealing with selling insurance across state lines, and a couple of other things, and they still say, it's not enough. then they say, be very afraid, people. be very afraid, because the senate might do this with a

Barbara Boxer

0:53:31 to 0:53:52( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: majority vote. well, i would suggest, all of us are here because we want a majority -- we won a majority vote. i don't hear any of my completion suggesting that we need -- i don't hea any of my colleagues suggesting that we

Barbara Boxer

0:53:53 to 0:54:14( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: need 600 votes to win. there is a point when something turns and it becomes obstruction. i can't look in the face of any of sunlights who are having all of these problems and tell them, i'm sorry, i couldn't do anything even though we had a majority in the senate. and so they're scaring people about using a procedure that they have used over the years.

Barbara Boxer

0:54:15 to 0:54:35( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: out of 22 times, they used reconciliation procedure requiring a majority of the vote -- a majority vote 16 of the 22 times. i need to say that again. my replican friends, who abwho are the use of a -- who abhor the use of a majority role is, used it 16 times out of the 22 times it was used and mosy it

Barbara Boxer

0:54:36 to 0:54:58( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: was used for health care. then they say, oh, no -- oh, no. when we used it, we used it for much smaller things. no. i checked it out. the whole reagan revolution was done by reconciliation. all of the bush tax cuts, health care and all.

Barbara Boxer

0:54:59 to 0:55:19( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: so the very slippery slope of their argument, whatever the argument of the day is, at the end of the day, it's about scaring people. it's about scaring people. so i'm going to close with this: i'm going to talk about the eight or ten things that happened within six months to a year at that this bill is signed

Barbara Boxer

0:55:20 to 0:55:41( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: into law, real things. for all new policies, you can keep your child on your policy until he or she is 27 years of age. 27 years of age. i know a lot of people whose kids have been thrown off their policy. they may have had asthma, for example, and they say, you have a preexisting condition. they can get no insuran.

Barbara Boxer

0:55:42 to 0:56:02( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: we fix that in this bill. if you have a preexisting condition, and you're an adult, and you can't get insurance, you can join a high-risk pool and get insurance very soon -- within 900 days. if you are a small business -- within 90 days. if you are a small business

Barbara Boxer

0:56:03 to 0:56:26( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: struggling to find health or yourself-employed -- and i have spoken to so many in that situation in california -- you you will get many bills for small business and self-employed people in tax credits to help you get insurance. there will be no preexisting condition for children.

Barbara Boxer

0:56:27 to 0:56:47( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: if you have a child who may have a preexisting condition, they still can get insured. i think the story that harry reid told about a couple that had full insurance and the woman gave birth to a baby and the baby had a cleft palate and the couple was distraught and the doctor said, don't worry, we can

Barbara Boxer

0:56:48 to 0:57:08( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: fix that baby right up and no one is going to know there was a problem. they wrote to their insurance mpany. you know what their insurance company said? even though they gave full coverage to that pregnant woman, your baby has a preexisting condition. you're out of luck.

Barbara Boxer

0:57:09 to 0:57:30( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: that is morally reprehensible. so if you want to be scared about something -- and i don't believe in being scared about anything, but if you want to be scared about something, be scared about the status quo. be scared about what your insurers could do to you in today's world. what else happens? prevention is pretty much free. as soon as this bill is signed

Barbara Boxer

0:57:31 to 0:57:51( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: into law, you get to go to your doctor and get prentive treatment pretty much for free. if you are a senior and you're on a prescription drug plan, we're going to close that gap, that payment gap where you get to a certain level -- what is that level, do you remember? --

Barbara Boxer

0:57:52 to 0:58:15( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: you get to a certain level and then your insurance company stops paying until you reach yet another level. so at the time you need your medicine most, it's not the for you. we're going to close that doughnut hole. by the way, that impacts 794,000 californians and the president

Barbara Boxer

0:58:16 to 0:58:36( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: wants to give about $250 to help our seniors who fall into that doughnut hole right away. also, we'll have insurance reform. the minute this bill is signed into law, annsurance company must use 80% of their income on

Barbara Boxer

0:58:37 to 0:58:57( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: you, on the people who have insurance, n on them, not putting it in their pocket, not on these outrageous bonuses and paying their people millions of dollars. 80% to 85% will he to go into the business of helping their people by expanding coverage or

Barbara Boxer

0:58:58 to 0:59:19( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: lowering premiums. and there's a couple more things that kick no more caps on new plans. remember when i told you, if you don't read -- we once had -- i remember my husband once had a plan, mr. president, that this had a cap. we didn't even know it. somebody warned us, and we realized it was bad plan and it was a cap, and i forget the

Barbara Boxer

0:59:20 to 0:59:41( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: amount, but it sn't that high. and you'll be protected from your insurance company walking away from you. no more rescissions in all new plans. and there are other benefits to retirees. and in 2014, we'll have these exchanges, and you'll be able to shop for the best insurance in an exchange, online.

Barbara Boxer

0:59:42 to 1:00:02( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: it'll be very clear. so we're moving in the right direction. at the end of the day, by the way, this bill saves money. not -- not only is it deficit neutral, it helps the deficit. why? we take the fraud, waste, and abuse out of the system. so, mr. president, my message to

Barbara Boxer

1:00:03 to 1:00:23( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: the people of this great country is don't listen to the fearmongering. learn the facts. understand how life will be better if we move forward with this, not in three years but right away. i think if we do that and realize that we're going to do it in a way that actually

Barbara Boxer

1:00:24 to 1:00:44( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: reduces theeficit, there should be strong support for this bill, and i hope we'll be able to get to that day as we focus on getting this country on track. jobs, jobs, jobs, jobs. we also fix this problem of unaffordable health care, tenuous health care. it's got to become something we can count on. thank you very, very much, mr. president.

Barbara Boxer

1:00:45 to 1:00:56( Edit History Discussion )

Barbara Boxer: i would yield the floor. and i would note the absence of

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