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DCCC: Representative Lou Barletta Votes to Put Health Insurance Industry In Charge of Americans’ Health Care

Representative Lou Barletta stood with health insurance companies by voting to repeal the new health insurance reform law that protects Americans from insurance company abuses and makes health care affordable. 
If Representative Lou Barletta gets his way, the insurance industry could deny coverage to children with pre-existing conditions, pregnant women and breast cancer survivors.  Small businesses would lose tax credits that help make health insurance more affordable.  Young people won’t be able to stay on their parents’ plans until age 26.  And  millions of seniors would pay more for prescription drugs, many would  pay thousands more.   “Rather than listen to us and focusing on jobs, Representative Lou Barletta today voted to put health insurance companies back in charge of our health care,” said Jesse Ferguson of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. “Lou Barletta voted to allow insurance companies to deny health care to children with pre-existing conditions, cancer survivors, to raise prescription drug costs for seniors and to eliminate tax breaks for small businesses. Voters now see that Representative Lou Barletta has been on everyone else’s side, but ours.”
For Pennsylvania’s 11th Congressional District, repealing health insurance reform could:
o   Allow insurance companies to deny coverage to 115,000 to 291,000 individuals, including 7,000 to 34,000 children, with pre-existing conditions.
o   Rescind consumer protections for 420,000 individuals who have health insurance through their employer or the market for private insurance.
o   Eliminate health care tax credits for up to 14,000 small businesses and 190,000 families.
o   Increase prescription drug costs for 12,300 seniors who hit the Part D drug “donut hole” and deny new preventive care benefits to 133,000 seniors. 
o   Increase the costs of early retiree coverage for up to 8,300 early retirees.
o   Eliminate new health care coverage options for 1,800 uninsured young adults.
o   Increase the number of people without health insurance by 22,000 individuals.
o   Increase the costs to hospitals of providing uncompensated care by $42 million annually.
Source: The House Energy and Commerce Committee
Under the Republican repeal effort:
·         Insurance companies will once again be able to drop people when they get sick – exactly when coverage is needed most;
·         Children with pre-existing conditions will be denied coverage, while insurance companies would again impose devastating annual and lifetime caps;
Young people will not be able to stay on their parents’ plans until age 26;
Pregnant women and breast cancer survivors can be denied coverage;
·         Seniors will face an increase in their prescription drug costs – millions thrown back into the Medicare Part D Donut Hole. Repeal would deny seniors a 50% discount on prescription drugs, re-creating the devastating coverage gap.
According to the Center for American Progress, the repeal of health insurance reform would eliminate 250,000 to 400,000 jobs annually over the next decade. [Center for American Progress, 1/7/11]
·         Barletta voted to repeal Health Insurance Reform. [H.R. 2, #14, 1/19/11]  Health Insurance Reform legislation passed the House of Representatives on Sunday, March 21, 2010  [H.R. 3590, #165, 3/21/10] [H.R. 4872, #167, 3/21/10]
·         According to the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, repealing health insurance reform legislation will add $240 billion to the deficit. [Politico; 1/6/11]  
·         Representative Lou Barletta has received $31,750 in campaign contributions from the insurance industry, including health insurance companies.  []

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