Doak cheers as Lankford, Boren join U.S. House majority seeking repeal of ‘ObamaCare’
By Patrick B. McGuigan
The U.S. House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly to repeal the 2010 federal health care law on Wednesday (January 19). Oklahoma’s newest member of Congress, U.S. Rep. James Lankford, voted with the 245-189 majority.
U.S. Rep. Dan Boren, the only Democrat in the Sooner State’s congressional delegation, was one of three members of his party to reject one of the signature enactments of President Barack Obama’s first two years in office.
As the U.S. House voted, debate over the bill continued at the state Capitol in Oklahoma City, with Senate Republicans decrying the controversial legislation they deemed “ObamaCare,” while Oklahoma County Democrats defended the landmark bill officially called the “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.” Meanwhile, Oklahoma’s new insurance commissioner praised the vote in Congress.
In a statement sent to CapitolBeatOK, Lankford said, ‘’I vowed to repeal this vastly unpopular law and … I joined more than 240 members of the House of Representatives to honor that commitment. Americans were rightly outraged by its passage and have continued to resist a job-destroying, government-takeover of health care. Those voices have not been ignored and the pledge to make government smaller and less intrusive is well underway.
“A clean slate that will allow us to enact common-sense reforms is the only solution. I urge the Senate to immediately take up repeal legislation and allow a vote to come to the floor. Senate Democrats now need to defend their plan and explain to the country how increased spending, higher taxes, more regulations and growing bureaucracy will lead to better health care outcomes and economic growth.
“I look forward to beginning work tomorrow to replace this law with reforms that give greater power to patients and encourages economic vitality. This is the United States; we can and must do better. It’s time to attain higher standards and reforms that the American people can be proud of.”
Also this week, Oklahoma Commissioner of Insurance John Doak cheered the U.S. House vote to repeal what a press release from his office deemed “the expensive, restrictive and unconstitutional mandates placed on states and consumers under recent federal health care reforms.”
Doak campaigned last year against the law, joined a federal lawsuit to challenge it, and supported State Question 756, the state ballot question that allows Oklahomans to “opt out” of the federal law’s individual mandate to purchase private health insurance.
In a statement sent to CapitolBeatOK, Commissioner Doak said, “With the passage of State Question 756 in November, Oklahomans already went on-record that these federal mandates were not in our state’s best interests. … Congress has taken the first step toward lifting this federal burden from taxpayers everywhere, including Oklahoma.”
In his statement, Doak said he favors “implementing health care solutions at the state level, facilitating the purchase of insurance across state lines, and promotion of association health plans to both increase health care options and lower insurance costs for Oklahomans.”
Doak concluded his statement, saying: “It is a theme I have heard repeated from my constituents across the Sooner State. Oklahomans want to keep our health care choices. Oklahomans want and deserve quality health care at affordable prices. Oklahomans don’t want a bureaucratic federal health care system that puts distance between doctors and their patients.
“The system devised in Washington, D.C., provided none of those things that most Oklahomans want from their health care system, and embodied almost everything they don’t want. Congress’ vote to repeal that program is welcomed in Oklahoma.”