Video: Republican SOTU Response
Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., delivers the Republican response to President Obama's State of the Union speech and vows the GOP will work to replace the health law. (View President Obama's State of the Union remarks on health care here.)
Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., Chairman of the House Budget Committee, delivered the Republican response to President Barack Obama's State of the Union message. Here are the excerpts concerning health care:
The facts are clear: Since taking office, President Obama has signed into law spending increases of nearly 25% for domestic government agencies – an 84% increase when you include the failed stimulus. ...
Then the President and his party made matters even worse, by creating a new open-ended health care entitlement.
What we already know about the President’s health care law is this: Costs are going up, premiums are rising, and millions of people will lose the coverage they currently have. Job creation is being stifled by all of its taxes, penalties, mandates and fees.
Businesses and unions from around the country are asking the Obama Administration for waivers from the mandates. Washington should not be in the business of picking winners and losers.
The President mentioned the need for regulatory reform to ease the burden on American businesses. We agree – and we think his health care law would be a great place to start.
Last week, House Republicans voted for a full repeal of this law, as we pledged to do. And we will work to replace it with fiscally responsible, patient-centered reforms that actually reduce costs and expand coverage.
Health care spending is driving the explosive growth of our debt. And the President’s law is accelerating our country toward bankruptcy. ...
Speaking candidly, as one citizen to another: We still have time. But not much time. If we continue down our current path, we know what our future will be. Just take a look at what’s happening to Greece, Ireland, the United Kingdom and other nations in Europe. They didn’t act soon enough; and now their governments have been forced to impose painful austerity measures: large benefit cuts to seniors and huge tax increases on everybody.
Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., also responded to the president's address. Here are excerpts of her speech, delivered on television and to supporters via webcam:
I want to thank the Tea Party Express and Tea Party HD for inviting me to speak this evening. I'm here at their request and not to compete with the official Republican remarks. ....
Well, deficits were unacceptably high under President Bush, but they exploded under President Obama's direction, growing the national debt by an astounding $3.1 trillion.
Well, what did we buy? Instead of a leaner, smarter government, we bought a bureaucracy that now tells us which lightbulbs to buy and which may put 16,500 IRS agents in charge of policing President Obama's health care bill. Obamacare mandates and penalties may even force many job-creators to just stop offering health insurance altogether, unless, of course, yours is one of the more than 222 privileged companies, or unions, that's already received a government waiver under Obamacare.
In the end, unless we fully repeal Obamacare, a nation that currently enjoys the world's finest health care might be forced to rely on government-run coverage. That could have a devastating impact on our national debt for even generations to come. ...
The president could also turn back some of the 132 regulations put in place in the last two years, many of which will cost our economy $100 million or more. And the president should repeal Obamacare and support free-market solutions, like medical malpractice reform and allowing all Americans to buy any health care policy they like anywhere in the United States.