We Aren’t Doctors, But We Know What’s Best For You

John Boehner
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Posted: Aug 03, 2009 12:00 AM

Like the old joke goes, President Obama isn’t a doctor, but he plays one on TV -- giving Americans a discomforting glimpse of life under ObamaCare, with government leaders and bureaucrats dispensing medical opinions that are better left to doctors, medical professionals, and patients. In recent weeks, the President has weighed in on the health care debate in a way few people would have expected, in one instance claiming that doctors make decisions about taking out a child’s tonsils based on how much money they make, not what’s in the best interest of the child. Doctors around the country took offense, and rightly so. There are few issues that are as personal and as important to every American family as health care, which is why Congress should be working together to get health care right, rather than ramming through a government takeover of health care.

Today I am releasing a lighthearted video that underscores a very serious point that congressional Democrats are going to hear throughout August as they travel outside of Washington: Americans want lower health care costs – not a trillion-dollar government takeover of health care that increases costs and lets Washington bureaucrats make decisions that should be made by doctors and patients. With more Americans now opposed to the government-run health care plan pushed by President Obama and Democratic leaders than for it, this summer may well serve as a wake-up call for rank-and-file Democrats. In fact, this health care bill may be the flashpoint for the anti-Washington anger that has been mounting since the beginning of the year.

Democratic leaders say they are planning an August “offensive” but the reality is their government takeover of health care will increase the cost of Americans’ health care, kill jobs, force millions of Americans to lose their current coverage, add hundreds of billions to the deficit, and let government bureaucrats make decisions that should be made by doctors and patients. That is why more and more Americans are rejecting the Democrats’ approach. Americans want reforms to lower costs, not a government-knows-best plan that would scrap everything and start over.

House Republicans have offered real reforms that would lower health care costs. Our plan roots out waste, fraud, and abuse in the system and reforms medical liability rules that cost families millions each year – millions that line the pockets of trial lawyers at the expense of patients and doctors. It lets small businesses band together through associations and purchase health insurance for workers at a lower cost, just like large corporations and unions do. It offers incentives to help Americans who do not have access to quality health care get the coverage they can afford, while giving states tools to design programs that make health care coverage more affordable. And it reforms regulations so insurance companies compete for your business and you can shop around for the best coverage and price.

Over the August break, I hope Democrats and Republicans alike listen to the concerns of their constituents and return to Washington in September with a renewed commitment to getting health care reform right. If President Obama and congressional Democrats are serious about lowering costs, increasing access, and improving quality, they will scrap their government takeover of health care and finally sit down with Republicans to work on bipartisan reforms that give Americans what they are seeking: better access to affordable care. Government doesn’t know best when it comes to the very personal health care decisions that families and doctors face every day in this country. Let’s hope congressional Democrats learn that lesson. In the meantime, check out the new web video below: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=egcIKZoNGd8.