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Senate Proceeding 12-20-09 on Dec 21st, 2009 :: 0:04:00 to 0:13:25
Total video length: 1 hours 32 minutes Stream Tools: Stream Overview | Edit Time

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Lamar Alexander

0:03:57 to 0:04:17( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: minutes prior to 1:00 a.m. and the republican leader controlling the ten minutes immediately prior. mr. alexander: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from tennessee. mr. alexander: mr. president, i intend to take ten minutes of the republican time. will you please let me know when one minute remains. the presiding officer: the senator will be notified. mr. alexander: i thank you, mr. president.

Lamar Alexander

0:04:00 to 0:13:25( Edit History Discussion )
Speech By: Lamar Alexander

Lamar Alexander

0:04:18 to 0:04:39( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: mr. president, there may be a number of americans who are switching over from the minnesota v. carolina football game and they may be wondering what in the world is the united states senate doing coming into session at midnight on a sunday in the middle of a snowstorm and getting ready to vote at 1:00 a.m. so let me try to explain that

Lamar Alexander

0:04:40 to 0:05:01( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: for just a moment. the reap is that the majority leader, the democratic majority leader, who's the only one that can set our schedule, showed up yesterday with a 400-page amendment. yesterday. this amendment had been written in secret for the last six weeks. the assistant democratic leader said last week on the floor he had no idea what was in it. of course, none of us on the republican side knew what was in it.

Lamar Alexander

0:05:02 to 0:05:22( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: so almost no one here knew what was in it. it was presented to us and then the democratic leader said, well, we're going to start voting on it and we're going to pass it before christmas. now, this is an amendment to the health care bill which when fully implemented will cost about $2.5 trillion over ten years, according to the congressional budget office,

Lamar Alexander

0:05:23 to 0:05:44( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: which restructures one-sixth of our economy, which affects 300 million people, which will raise taxes by about a trillion dollars when fully implemented over ten years, which will cut medicare by about a trillion dollars when fully implemented over ten years, not to make medicare more solvent, because, as we know, it's -- it's going

Lamar Alexander

0:05:45 to 0:06:05( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: to become insolvent, according to its trustees, by 2015. but to spend on a new entitlement. and it will also shift to the states a great many expenses, so much so that our democratic governor has said it's the mother of all unfunded mandates. the governor of california has said it's the last thing we need. take your time, get it right.

Lamar Alexander

0:06:06 to 0:06:26( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: but the democratic leader and his colleagues insist that we need to bring this up in the middle of a snowstorm, write it in secret, vote on it in the middle of the night, and get it passed before christmas eve. now, why would they wt to do that? well, mr. president, i think the answer is very clear. it's because they want to make sure they pass it before the

Lamar Alexander

0:06:27 to 0:06:47( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: american people find out what's in it. because the american people by nearly 2-1, according to the cnn poll, don't like what they've heard about the health care bill. and when they have to start explaining what's in it, there afraid it will be worse and it will never pass. republicans are not the only ones who believe that we ought

Lamar Alexander

0:06:48 to 0:07:08( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: to stop and think about big issues before we deal with it. eight democratic senators -- senator lincoln and bayh and landrieu, lieberman, mccaskill, nelson, pryor and webb -- wrote senator reid on october 6, saying, as you know, to senator reid, "americans across our country have been

Lamar Alexander

0:07:09 to 0:07:30( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: on health care reform. without a doubt, reforming health care reform in america is one of the most monumental and far-reaching undertakings considered by this body in decades. we believe the public's participatio in this process is critical to our overall success." i'm quoting from the eight democratic senators. and they go on to say they want to make sure that the bill is on

Lamar Alexander

0:07:31 to 0:07:51( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: the web site for at least 72 hours before we vote on it. mr. president, this bill was given to us yesterday, 400 pages of it we hadn't seen before. 72 hours would be tuesday. so the minimum requirement, according to the eight democratic senators and all 40 republican senators, we shouldn't even think about

Lamar Alexander

0:07:52 to 0:08:14( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: voting on it until at least tuesday. and then one would think we would be amending it and debating it and considering it and thinking about it and to find out what it actually does. according to the eight democratic senators, by publicly posting the legislation and the congressional budget office scores 72 hours before it's brought to a vote in the senate and by publishing the text of

Lamar Alexander

0:08:15 to 0:08:35( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: amendments as they're our constituents will have the opportunity to evaluate these policies. as their democratic elected representatives, it's our duty to listen and to provide them with a chance to respond to proposals that will impact their lives. yet we're presented with it in the middle of a snowstorm on saturday, we're meeting at midnight, we're voting at 1:00

Lamar Alexander

0:08:36 to 0:08:56( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: a.m., we're -- it's demanding that it be passed even though most of the provisions, as the senator from maine has said, don't even begin to take effect for four what's the rush, mr. president? i think the rush is that our friends on the other side don't seniors how you can cut a trillion dollars out of

Lamar Alexander

0:08:57 to 0:09:18( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: medicare. now, it's exactly over the next ten years, but when fully implemented, a trillion out of medicare and spend it on a new program without reducing medicare services to 40 million seniors. the director of the congressional budget office has already that said for the

Lamar Alexander

0:09:19 to 0:09:39( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: 11 million seniors who are medicare advantage that fully half their benefits will be affected. i think our friends on the other side don't want the american people to understand why the $578 billion in new taxes that are going to begin to be imposed next year, they're going to have a hard time explaing how that

Lamar Alexander

0:09:40 to 0:10:01( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: will cre at a time when we have 10% unemployed. and they really don't want the american people to find out that the director of the congressional budget office said that if we put those new taxes on insurance premiums, on medical devices, all a almost all of them will be passed on to the consumers, and as a result,

Lamar Alexander

0:10:02 to 0:10:23( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: premiums wilgo up. there are some very strong words that have been coming from the other side about republicans saying that this bill will actually increase the cost of health care. it's not republicans who are saying that, mr. president. here's what david brooks in "the new york times said in his analysis of the bill when he gave the reasons for it and the reasons against it this week. and came to the conclusion that

Lamar Alexander

0:10:24 to 0:10:44( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: if he were a senator, he'd vote against it. the second reason to oppose this bill, said mr. brooks is that -- and i quote -- "according to the chief actuary for medicare, it will cause national health care spending to increase faster." that's right, mr. president, we're going to raise taxes, cut medicare, send the big bill to

Lamar Alexander

0:10:45 to 0:11:05( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: the state. all for what? quote -- "according to the chief actuary for medicare, it will cause national health care spending to increase faster." so if you're paying x for premiums, you're going to be paying more as a result of this bill. health care spending goes -- continues david brooks, "is already zooming pas 17% of our

Lamar Alexander

0:11:06 to 0:11:27( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: gross domestic product to 22% and then it's going to be hard to explain to the 9 million people that the congressional budget office letter said would lose their employer insurance under this bill why that will happen. of course, it will happen because under the bill as a whole, as employers look at the

Lamar Alexander

0:11:28 to 0:11:48( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: mandates and the costs, many will decide not to offer health insurance and so those employe will find themselves either in medicaid, the program for low-income americans into which 15 million americans are going, a program which 50% of doctors won't see new medicaid patients.

Lamar Alexander

0:11:49 to 0:12:10( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: it's like giving you a ticket to a bus when the bus only runs half the time. that's where many of these americans will go or they'll go into the individual market and the individual market will have higher premis. now, the other side says, ah, but there will be subsidies for some of you. but the premiums are going to be higher. the health care costs are going

Lamar Alexander

0:12:11 to 0:12:31( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: to be higher. the majority doesn't want to explain why this bill changes the bipartisan agreement not to have federal funding for abortion that's been agreed to since 1977. they don't want to take time for the american people to understand the class act, the

Lamar Alexander

0:12:32 to 0:12:54( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: long-term insurance act, a new entitlement, which sounds wonderful, but the democratic chairman of the budget committee described it as a ponzi scheme worthy of bernie madoff. that is because the amount of money that would be paid in - a person pays a people are july of

Lamar Alexander

0:12:55 to 0:13:16( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: $28.80 per yea year for five years, and then they'll have a long-term benefit for a long time after that. mr. president, it's obvious why the majority -- thank you, mr. president. it's obvious why the majority has cooked up this amendment in secret, has introduced it in the middle of a snowstorm, scheduled the senate to come in session at midnight, has

Lamar Alexander

0:13:17 to 0:13:25( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: scheduled a vote for 1:00 a.m., is insisting that it be passed before christmas -- because they don't want the american people to know what's in it.

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