Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tn.), the ranking member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, on Tuesday announced he is cosponsoring a bill introduced by Senstor Ted Cruz (R-Texas) to fully repeal the health care law, saying: “I told the President at the White House health care summit that his law would increase individual premiums and it has.”
Senator Alexander said, “The case for repealing this law has only grown stronger as American businesses and families have begun to feel the pain of its impact—a half-trillion dollars of new taxes, premiums going up, employers cutting hours and jobs just to stay in business. Rather than expand a system everyone knows is too expensive, we should be working to reduce its cost so more Americans can afford health insurance.”
Senator Alexander voted against the health care bill after warning his colleagues it would be “an historic mistake,” and has voted repeatedly to repeal it. He has said the law should be replaced with immediate insurance reforms and step-by-step reductions in health care costs, such as allowing the purchase of insurance across state lines; permitting small businesses to join together to offer cheaper insurance to employees; limiting junk lawsuits against doctors; reducing waste, fraud and abuse; and expanding health savings accounts.
Senator Alexander was asked by Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and then-House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) to represent Republicans at a summit at the White House in February, 2010 to discuss the president’s proposed health-care law. He warned President Obama that premiums for millions of Americans with individual insurance would rise under the president’s proposal. The president disputed Alexander’s charge, but a report by the Congressional Budget Office confirmed that premiums would indeed rise.