October 02,2009

Baucus Statement on Health Care Reform Mark-Up Progress


To: Reporters and Editors
From: Scott Mulhauser and Erin Shields for Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.)
Re: Baucus Statement on Mark-Up Progress

Chairman Baucus issued the following statement today after the Finance Committee wrapped up this week's work and prepared to send its amended mark to CBO for a complete score. On September 16, 2009, Chairman Baucus introduced the America’s Healthy Future Act - landmark health care reform legislation to lower costs and provide quality, affordable health care coverage  - and the Finance Committee began marking up this legislation September 22, 2009. The Committee will meet next week to review preliminary CBO scores of the amended package and report the bill out of Committee.

From Chairman Baucus:

“More than a year ago, we turned to health care reform. It was clear then – and it is even more so now - that it is time to act.

After 18 hearings and roundtables, hundreds of hours of debate, discussion and study over this past year, we have a bill that will improve the lives of every American - and one that does so in a fiscally- responsible way. We can all be proud of what this bill will achieve.

This bill will lower taxes for more than 42 million Americans and reduce the federal deficit.

This bill will protect Medicare benefits for seniors.

This bill will significantly expand health coverage.

By building on our employer-based system, the majority of Americans can keep what they have today, if they like it.

And this bill will help the most vulnerable in our society get the care they need, not just the care they can afford.

Tonight, we can all be proud. We are offering a fiscally-responsible bill that takes good ideas from both sides of the aisle.

I have never felt more proud because, tonight, we take another step toward putting this country on a path to a healthy future.

Senators, this bill is better for your efforts. Thank you for your work and your commitment to the process.

Next week, we will wrap up the amendment process and work with CBO to get a complete score before we wrap up and merge with the HELP bill.

Together, we will deliver a bill that can pass the Senate. Together, we will achieve the key goals of health care reform. We will lower costs. We will expand coverage. And we will ensure quality health care for every American.”