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Columns August 1, 2017  RSS feed

U.S. Congressman Kevin Brady

The Hard Work on Healthcare and Tax Reform Rolls On
By U.S. Congressman Kevin Brady

After seven years and over 200 committee hearings outlining the growing problems and the impending collapse of Obamacare, the Senate failed to advance a repeal. The Senate’s failure to act is a let-down, plain and simple. We made a promise to repeal and replace Obamacare, one that the House delivered on in passing the American Health Care Act. I truly appreciate Senators Cornyn and Cruz for all their efforts to deliver in the Senate.

In Texas, we have seen nine insurance providers leave the market in the last two years, and 94 out of 254 counties have just one insurance provider. This leaves 1.2 million Texans with fewer choices and higher costs. Make no mistake, we promised to repeal Obamacare and we will. For those trapped in Obamacare, we must continue to look for immediate solutions to deliver relief, stop premiums from soaring even higher and help people get health care that’s right for them.

The House, the Senate and the White House took a significant step forward to fix our broken tax code. Our unified commitment represents a historic and once-in-a-generation opportunity to deliver pro-growth tax reform that supports families, small businesses, and American job creators competing at home and around the globe. Above all, the mission of the two tax-writing committees – the Committee on Ways and Means, which I lead and the Senate Finance Committee – in drafting this legislation is to protect American jobs and make taxes simpler, fairer and lower for hard-working men and women across this country. I look forward to working with my fellow committee members and congressional colleagues, our constituents and the White House to produce bold, pro-growth and pro-taxpayer legislation that President Trump can sign this year.

In my last column, I wrote about a Medicare bill that helps protect patients that risk infection from having to travel between clinics and hospitals for treatment. This bill inspired by my constituent, Carol Ann Demaret, unanimously passed the House. Carol Ann’s son, David, born with Severe Combined Immunodeficiency Disease, lived in a sterile “bubble” to prevent infection.

David may have only had 12 years on this earth, but his legacy lives on with this legislation and with the David Clinics at Texas Children’s Hospital.

It’s August again, and that means Congress is recessing for the August district work period. The Congress may be in recess, but this is not vacation time – quite the opposite. This work period provides Members of Congress an opportunity to spend more time at home with their constituents, to listen and to make sure their voices are being heard in Washington. This August, I will be crisscrossing our district meeting with constituents, main street businesses and local and state officials -- to listen and learn about the issues important to them. My family and I never moved to Washington; we live right here in The Woodlands, so I can remain close to the people I represent. Listening and learning from you is one of the most important parts of my job, and you better believe I will be pounding the pavement this August, attending meetings, and visiting in the workplace with residents of the 8th Congressional District.

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