House Votes To Protect Taxpayers Dollars From Fraud in Health Care Law
WASHINGTON, DC – House Energy and Commerce Committee leaders today voiced their strong support for H.R. 2775, the No Subsidies Without Verification Act. On Friday, July 5th, as Americans were still celebrating the nation’s independence, the administration quietly released 600 pages of health law regulations. Buried on page 350 was an announcement that the government would no longer verify that each applicant for the exchange subsidies was actually qualified for that assistance. Instead, the administration would rely on self-attestation and sample audits to “protect” the integrity of this new $1 trillion entitlement program. H.R. 2775, which passed the House by a vote of 235 to 191, will ensure accurate verification systems are in place before subsidies are dispersed.
Congresswoman Renee Ellmers (R-NC):
This past summer alone we saw three major delays in the law’s implementation. From the employee mandate, to consumer price caps, to the issue we are debating here today. Congresswoman Black’s bill, H.R. 2775, the No Subsidies Without Verification Act, is a first step at attacking the latter. The premise of this bill is quite simple. Serving as the stewards of taxpayer dollars, it is one of our most important jobs as Members of Congress. After all, dollars wasted by Congress or improperly spent by the executive branch, has a direct impact on the budgets of families across this country who are struggling to pay their bills.
Energy and Commerce Committee Vice Chairman Marsha Blackburn (R-TN):
I am pleased that as we discuss and stand in support of H.R. 2775 that my colleagues across the aisle are getting our message. When it comes to Obamacare, yes, delay, defund, repeal, replace. That is exactly what we want to do because this law has become so amazingly unpopular with the American people. Indeed, with women, over 65 percent of all American woman oppose this law and the implementation of this law. The reason we are bringing this legislation forward is because there is a gaping hole. We know that having self-attestation for getting these taxpayer subsidies in these exchanges is going to lead to an incredible amount of fraud. We are even having estimates of as much as $250 billion worth of fraud that could be going into this program.
House Republican Conference Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA):
Over the last several months we’ve seen the wheels falling off: the delay in the employer mandate, the delay in the consumer cost-containment rule, the delay in the finalizing agreements with insurance plans, and now this delay in ensuring that the verification mechanisms are in place to protect taxpayers.
Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee Chairman Joe Pitts (R-PA):
The government doesn’t typically operate by the honor system, but when it comes to doling out billions of dollars in new Obamacare subsidies, the government is just going to accept applications without question on the honor system. This is all in the interest of getting Obamacare up and running as soon as possible without any regard to potential fraud and it’s after the old ‘pay and chase’ model.
Congresswoman Renee Ellmers (R-NC):
As Ronald Reagan famously said, ‘trust, but verify.’ If history is any guide, these claims of accountability will be disregarded unless oversight is enforced. This only reinforces the need for the No Subsidies Without Verification Act. The bill would simply require certification systems to be in place so that the administrators can successfully and consistently verify eligibility before any premium and cost-sharing credit are paid out.