Enzi: Majority ignores public, passes flawed health care bill
by U.S. Senator Mike Enzi media release
December 24, 2009
Washington, D.C. – On Christmas Eve, a divided Senate passed its version of the most sweeping health care legislation in U.S. history. U.S. Senator Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., said the vote was a "political engineering marvel, but a disservice to the country." He voted against the measure.
The Senate health care bill will now need to be reconciled with the House’s health care bill before being considered again by each chamber. Enzi made the following comments before the vote.
"It’s hard enough to get a family of four to agree on what to have for dinner, let alone 60 senators to agree on what to have in a bill. But all 60 had to agree to this bill. They moved away from legislating to ‘deal making’. You have to hand it to the majority leader. Everyone should be in awe of his ability to give much to a few, none to many and still get all to stay on board what they can see from the polls is a sinking ship.
"Welfare reform, civil rights, Medicare and all monumental pieces of legislation ever passed by Congress have passed with members from both parties sharing the credit and blame…until now.
"You can’t change such a basic part of the economy, something that affects every single person, by ignoring many who have experience in the business and in the area. If you do, you’ll have legislation with major flaws. The American people recognize the flaws. More taxes, higher health care costs and worse health care delivery. What kind of health care bill is that? How on earth did the majority convince themselves this was a good thing? This bill not only breaks the bank, it breaks the very promises the President made to the country.
"We would have helped the majority pass a solid health care bill if they would have let us. All of us want to improve our health care system. The formula for good legislation is to take as many of the good ideas as possible from both sides and have the courage to tell some on both sides that their idea wasn’t ready for prime time. Evenhandedness and both leaders promoting the surviving ideas results in strong legislation and a stronger America. I hope that someday soon we can get back to that formula. It was not present this day or the days that led up to this vote."