As we move forward, we will seek to underscore two points that have gotten lost in the daily back-and-forth over broken websites, increased premiums and dropped coverage. First, the underlying and unfixable flaw of Obamacare is that it goes against all of the lessons of human history and puts its trust in a centralized bureaucracy instead of free individuals. Second, repealing Obamacare is not an end in itself. Those of us who believe in the Constitution, free enterprise and individual freedom have an absolute responsibility to provide the country with a new and better direction, and that is what we intend to do.
From my experience, I know that nothing is more personal than health care. After all, it's about the health of the people we love and care about. Every step in the direction of centralization is a step away from personalization. I steadfastly believe that no centralized bureaucracy and no politician -- Republican or Democrat -- should ever get in the way of decisions best made by patients, families and doctors.
While we have strong ties that bind us all together, we are a nation of individuals, endowed by our Creator with certain inalienable rights. Each of us has our own needs, and our elected officials must recognize that top-down cookie-cutter solutions simply will not work. Ultimately, they increase costs and decrease freedom of choice.
If such solutions will not work, we must offer ones that will. Every day that the American people are unaware of alternative ideas is a day that Obamacare's roots grow deeper and more permanent.
In direct contrast to the approach of "we have to pass the bill to find out what's in it," which gave us more than 2,700 pages of regulation and confusion, we will work this year to rally the country in a gradual, step-by-step way around a series of positive proposals that people can understand. We will move forward in such a way because I believe ideas matter. I can't begin to thank all of the people who have sent excellent ideas on health care reform.
Those of us who think we can do better than Obamacare cannot hope to win national elections, let alone win a massive policy fight, if we don't first win the argument. The argument about the right path forward for the American health care system is a big argument to win.
I fully expect that as we seek to reform major institutions, I will be attacked by those who disagree. Critics undoubtedly will try to pigeonhole this effort as just another attack on President Obama and his signature legislative achievement. However, this is about much more than Obamacare. It's about helping to ensure that Americans of every background have the opportunity to live longer, happier and more independent lives with more freedom and more choice.
The American people currently are witnessing the failure of centralized government to deliver affordable, quality health care, and there is no better time than this to consider better alternatives. This is a massive undertaking, and it will be tough. But when I look into the eyes of someone such as T.J. in Missouri, I know there are much tougher things to confront in this world.
I also know that if we have courage, then there is hope for a better future.
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