Press Releases

Rep. Larsen Votes for Historic Health Care Reform Legislation

Today, U.S. Representative Rick Larsen (WA-02) voted for historic health care reform legislation to make health care more affordable and secure for American families, small businesses and seniors.

“Health care reform has always been about one thing: the American people. Tonight I voted for health care reform that will immediately begin to lower the cost of health care for American families, small businesses and seniors.

“This health care reform bill is about instilling common-sense rules of the road to hold insurance companies accountable. We will immediately put an end to their abusive practices like arbitrarily hiking premiums, denying people coverage due to pre-existing conditions, and dropping patients from their plans when they get sick.

“I voted for this bill because of my constituent from Bellingham, who fell into the Medicare Part D “donut hole” in May last year and saw her prescription drug bills skyrocket. This health care reform legislation will immediately begin to close the donut hole and strengthen Medicare so seniors like her can count on affordable prescription drugs and better benefits for years to come.

“I voted for this bill because of a constituent from Clinton, who decided not to go to the hospital and get checked out after he fell and broke his ribs because the visit wasn’t covered by his high-deductible health plan and he couldn’t afford to pay out of pocket. This bill will immediately begin to lower the cost of health care for families who are already struggling to make ends meet in this economy.

“This bill will give the power back to the American consumer. It preserves choice and creates competition in the insurance market. If you like your plan, you can keep your plan. If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor. If you change jobs, you can keep your coverage.  

“I voted for this bill because of another constituent, a small business owner, who pays $50,000 out-of-pocket annually for his family’s individual health insurance plan. This bill will immediately begin to lower costs from small businesses so they no longer have to choose between health care and hiring.

“This bill will provide much-needed financial relief to small business owners by offering them tax credits when they purchase coverage for their employees. Small businesses are the engine of job growth in this country and in this economy we need them to use their dollars to fuel payrolls—not out of control premiums.

“I also fought hard to make sure the health care reform bill included a fair deal for Washington state. I pushed to protect access to health care for Washington state patients by ensuring that Washington state is rewarded, not penalized, for providing high-quality, low-cost patient care.  This bill includes language to fix the long-standing Medicare reimbursement problems that have hurt access to health care in Washington state.  This is a huge victory for our state.

The following are among the hundreds of organizations who have announced their support for the health care reform legislation:

Academic Medical Centers
Alliance for Retired Americans
American Academy of Child and Adult Psychiatry
American Academy of Family Physicians
American Academy of Pediatrics
American Academy of Physician Assistants
American Association for Cancer Research
American College of Nurse Midwives
American College of Physicians
American Diabetes Association
American Heart Association
American Hospital Association
American Hospice Foundation
American Nurses Association
American Psychological Association
American Public Health Association
Autism Society of America
Brain Injury Association of America
Breast Cancer Network of Strength
Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids
Children’s Defense Fund
Families USA
Fight Crime: Invest in Kids
Friends Committee on National Legislation
Health Care for America Now
Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
International Brotherhood of Boilermakers, IronShip Builders, Blacksmiths, Forgers and Helpers
International Union, United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America (UAW)
Lutheran Health Network
National Association of Community Health Centers
National Association of Public Hospitals and Health Systems
National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare
National Hispanic Council on Aging
National Medical Association
National Women’s Law Center
Paralyzed Veterans of America
School Social Work Association of America
Service Employees International Union
The Arc of the United States
Tourette Syndrome Association
United Association of Journeymen & Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipe Fitting Industry of the US and Canada
United Methodist Church- General Board of Church and Society
Volunteers of America