augusta free press news

Warner: ‘(T)he status quo is bankrupting our nation’

Senator explains vote to end cloture on health-care debate

Statement by Sen. Mark Warner

I voted to advance the Senate health-care bill to final passage because the status quo is bankrupting our nation and hurting our ability to compete in a global economy.

If we fail to act, Virginia’s small businesses will continue to see double-digit premium increases every year, and Virginia families could see up to 40 percent of their take-home pay consumed by health-care expenses by the year 2016.

While not perfect, this legislation will lower insurance premium costs for the majority of families and businesses. It will reduce the deficit by more than three-quarters of a trillion dollars over the next 20 years, and it will add at least nine years to the life of the Medicare Trust Fund.

I also believe recent changes have strengthened this legislation, including the elimination of proposals that could have broadly expanded the government’s role.

In addition, I worked with 12 of my freshman colleagues to successfully add amendments that add significant cost controls to this legislation. Our amendments encourage innovation, broaden transparency, and aggressively attack inefficiency and fraud.

I am pleased that our freshman amendments have received bipartisan support, and the package has been endorsed by the AARP, the Consumers Union and leading companies that belong to the Business Roundtable.

This legislation represents a strong start, but it will require that we stay focused on reducing costs as we begin to transition away from a health care delivery system that is based on volume and towards a system that rewards quality.


augusta free press
augusta free press