To the Editor:
Congressman Tom Latham is finally concerned with protecting Americans’ health care by co-sponsoring legislation in the Keep Your Health Plan Act. In a statement from Rep. Latham on Nov. 8, 2013, he states that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was, “passed in the dead of night by legislators who had no clue what was in it”. Does he really mean that the bill was written hastily so no elected official had a chance to read it?
By reading Wikipedia, you can find out that the legislation that eventually emerged from Congress in 2010 bears many similarities to a 2007 bill, the Healthy Americans Act, and was patterned after Romney’s Massachusetts health care plan. From June to September of 2009, the Senate Finance Committee held a series of 31 meetings to develop a health care reform bill. This group, which included Sen. Grassley, met for more than 60 hours, and the principles that they discussed, in conjunction with the other committees, became the foundation of the Senate’s health care reform bill. The Senate bill was then passed on December 24, 2009. The House passed the Senate bill on March 21, 2010 with the President signing ACA into law on March 23, 2010.
If bills are not being read, why are we paying Rep. Latham’s congressional staff to read each bill and summarize it for him, especially those already passed by the Senate? Reading the ACA bill should have been a priority for Rep. Latham, if he was truly concerned about Americans’ health care. How can you be against a law that you have not claimed to have read?