WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Charlie Dent (PA-15) issued the following statement on the United States Supreme Court’s decision involving the 2010 health care law:
“While the Supreme Court has upheld the constitutionality of the 2010 health care law, today’s decision validates concerns that the law vastly expands the federal government’s role in our health care system and profoundly impacts the personal lives and medical decisions of Americans. Although today’s ruling is significant, it does not change the fact the policies of the law have failed. Two and a half years into implementation, health care costs have increased for families and small businesses; our nation’s health care spending remains on an unsustainable trajectory; Americans are realizing they won’t be able to keep their current coverage as they were promised; and innovation and high-quality care, the hallmarks of our first rate system, are being threatened by punitive policies.
“With the major legal challenge decided, our attention must turn to addressing the crucial issues that should have been tackled when Congress and the nation began the health care reform dialogue in 2009. When the law was enacted, Congress and the President failed to implement the real reforms to reduce health care costs, make coverage more affordable, meaningfully expand access to care and improve quality. Instead, what the law has done is impose more than 20 new or higher taxes, cut Medicare by half a trillion dollars, authorize a trillion dollars in new government spending, impose costly new burdens on employers and discourage greater investment. Congress must work to reverse the numerous flawed policies that are negatively impacting all Americans, and advance deliberate, sensible reforms that target cost, access and quality.
“One of my greatest concerns about the health care law is it promises benefits, financed in the short-term by budget gimmicks and unrealistic assumptions, that are completely unsustainable in the long term. The way the law is structured has proven to be unmanageable. Costly provisions are driving up health care spending while policies intended as offsets have been abandoned by the Administration or deemed unworkable. In some cases, these provisions have been reversed by Congress to avoid severe economic impacts.
“An opportunity to enact meaningful reform was lost when the health care law was jammed through Congress by the President without thoughtful consideration of the far-reaching implications of its policies. With the Supreme Court’s decision now behind us and serious fiscal challenges before us, I believe we are presented a new opportunity to identify the failures of our health care system, repeal the law and then carefully develop solutions catering to the diverse needs of the American people. These solutions must also help place our nation on a sustainable fiscal path. I believe we can build bipartisan consensus around common-sense policies that reduce cost by placing more power in the hands of individuals; families and small businesses to make health care decisions; expand access by ensuring affordable coverage options are available to all Americans; and promote the use of technology and medical innovations to improve the quality and efficiency of the care we receive.”