Press Releases

 

Friday
Mar262010

Shea-Porter DoD, VA, Veterans Interest Groups Confirm Health Care Reform Legislation Protects TRICARE

WASHINGTON, DC  — Today, Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter said that she commends the efforts of leading government authorities and veterans organizations to correct misinformation regarding the impact of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (H.R. 3590) and the Reconciliation Act of 2010 (H.R. 4872) on TRICARE benefits. On March 20, 2010, the House of Representatives passed the TRICARE Affirmation Act (H.R. 4887), which  explicitly states that TRICARE and the Non-Appropriated Fund health plans satisfy all of the requirements for individual health insurance currently under consideration by Congress. This guarantees that those insured under TRICARE would not have to purchase additional insurance.  The TRICARE Affirmation Act passed by a vote of 403 to 0.  Shea-Porter, an original cosponsor of the legislation, spoke on the House floor and stated that TRICARE benefits “will remain as they are.” 

“As a former military spouse and a member of the House Armed Services Committee, I remain committed to ensuring that our veterans and service members receive quality health care under TRICARE,” said Congresswoman Shea-Porter. “The health care reform bill President Obama signed into law upholds this commitment. I am glad to see that leading government authorities and veterans organizations are working to make sure that our veterans receive accurate information about TRICARE.”

Here is what others are saying:

Joint Letter from House Committees: “The House Democratic leadership asked our committees to review H.R. 3590 and H.R. 4872 to assess the impact of the bills on the health care provided by the Department of Defense and the Department of Veterans Affairs. Our reviews of HR 3590 and HR 4872 lead us to believe that the intent of the bills was never to undermine or change the Department of Defense and Department of Veterans Affairs operation of their health care programs or interfere with the care that our service members receive under TRICARE.”

Statement from Secretary of Defense Robert Gates: Secretary Gates reassured service members and their families that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (H.R. 3590) and the Reconciliation Act of 2010 (H.R. 4872) will not negatively impact TRICARE.  Gates stated that, “the health and well-being of America’s men and women in uniform is my highest priority.  Our troops and their families can be re-assured that the health care reform legislation passed by the Congress will not negatively impact the TRICARE medical insurance program, as it already meets the bill’s quality and minimum benefit standards.”

Statement from VA Secretary Shinseki: “Fears that Veterans health care and TRICARE will be undermined by the health reform legislation are unfounded.  I am confident that the legislation being voted on today will provide the protections afforded our nation’s Veterans and the health care they have earned through their service.”

Statement from Tammy Duckworth, Assistant VA Secretary: “I personally receive my world class healthcare from the VA and as a dependent on my husband's TRICARE eligibility. This bill is good for our nation and our Veterans and Service Members and their families can be reassured that their benefits are safe.” 

Statement from Clarence E. Hill, The American Legion National Commander: “I have been assured personally by the President, Secretary of Defense, VA Secretary, Speaker of the House, Majority Leaders, and numerous other Senators and Representatives – as has National Commander David Rehbein before me – that nothing in the national health care reform legislation will change current DoD and VA health care eligibility or practices…I am 100 percent confident that Congress will act responsibly as regards the nation’s veterans and their families.”

Statement from John Rowan, National President of Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA):  “It is unfortunate that some continue to raise what is now is even more clearly a false alarm that is apparently meant to frighten veterans and their families in order to prompt them to oppose the pending legislation. While there is legitimate debate as to whether or not the pending health care measures should become law, VVA does not appreciate spreading rumors that are not accurate by any political partisan from any point of the political spectrum."



Friday
Mar262010

NHDP - Chair Ray Buckley and NH Citizens Discuss Impact of Historic Health Insurance Reform

Health insurance reform extends coverage to 140,000 Granite Staters, lowers costs for small businesses, and reins in abusive insurance practices
 
Concord - NHDP Chair Ray Buckley, nurse and State Representative Rich DiPentima, small business owner Don Brueggeman, Granite State mother Elaine Kellerman, and New Hampshire citizens held a press conference today to discuss the impact the recent landmark health insurance reform legislation has on Granite State citizens.
 
"I called this press conference today to put a face to the extraordinary achievement of passing comprehensive health care reform - for a century, presidents have tried and failed to make progress on this critically important issue," said Buckley.  "This legislation will immediately improve the lives of people here in New Hampshire, by lowering costs, expanding coverage, and reining in abusive insurance practices."
 
Elieen Kellerman, a wife and mother of two, echoed Buckley's remarks, and added that her story "was about one family, in one city, in one state.  Multiply that by the millions across the country, and you have the face of health insurance reform.  The benefits of this legislation are beyond measure."
 
By creating subsidized high-risk pools, allowing young people to stay on their families' insurance plan until age 26, increasing funding for Community Health Centers, and growing the number of primary care physicians, the legislation expands coverage to the over 140,000 New Hampshire resident currently without health insurance.
 
And for many of those who currently have coverage, the Affordable Health Care for America Act reduces costs.  Starting immediately, nearly 35,000 small businesses in New Hampshire become eligible for tax credits of up 35% of their employee's premium costs.  Anyone with a private health insurance plan will be guaranteed preventative care services that are exempt from deductibles and have no co-payments. 
 
The legislation also reins in insurance companies most abusive practices.  No longer can children be denied coverage for having a pre-existing condition at birth, nor will insurance companies be able to drop people from coverage when they get sick.
 
"Health care reform is exciting people all over the state because the new law benefits everyone in New Hampshire, from young people who won't lose insurance as they try to find a job, to senior citizens who are seeing the Medicare Part D 'donut hole' close," continued Buckley. 
 
"It is sadly unsurprising the New Hampshire Republicans want to repeal this historic reform.  For the past 12 months they have put the interests of insurance company lobbyists before those of New Hampshire families," added Buckley.  "They are apparently fine with insurance companies being able to deny a child born with diabetes or cancer life saving health insurance."
 
Repeal of the health care reform legislation would be the largest tax increase on middle class families and small businesses in United States history.  Over 200,000 senior citizens in New Hampshire would see higher Medicare premiums from the reopening of the donut hole, families who currently have health insurance would see premiums increase by $1,890-$2,710 over the next 6 years, and over 17,000 Granite Staters with pre-existing conditions would be denied coverage.
 
More detailed information on the benefits the Affordable Health Care Reform for America Act, can be found on the slides displayed at the press conference.  Copies can be found here.

Friday
Mar262010

DNC Announces 35 Television and Radio Ads on Health Reform To Run In Markets Across the Country including in New Hampshire 

Ads Show Support for Congressman Paul Hodes and other Democratic House Members Who Voted for the Bill, Calls Out Republican Members in Districts Won by Obama for Standing with Insurance Companies, Not the American People and Calling for Repeal

 DNC TV AD: "Shots: Hodes":  http://www.youtube.com/democraticvideo#p/u/13/juWMaminPqw

Washington – Today, the Democratic National Committee (DNC) announced that it will begin airing 35 television and radio ads beginning today in markets across the country.  The ads will praise Hew Hampshire Congressman Paul Hodes and other House Democrats who supported historic legislation to reform our nation’s health insurance system and highlight House Republicans who voted against health reform, which makes health insurance more affordable, reins in insurance company abuses and extends coverage to millions of Americans who lack it today.  With respect to Republican efforts to repeal health reform the radio ads say “Hands of our Health Care.”

Of the 35 Members, 25 television ads will show support for Democratic House Members who voted for the bill.  The ads are part of Organizing for America’s “You Fight, We Fight” program, which is dedicated to providing political and electoral support to Democrats who supported reform.  Organizing for America is a project of the DNC.

In addition to these 25 television ads thanking Democrats, 10 radio ads will run calling out Republican House Members in districts won by President Obama who chose to stand with insurance companies instead of the American people.  The ads note that many Republican members are now calling for the repeal of health reform, and asks the members’ constituents to call them and tell them emphatically “Hands off our Health Care.”

The TV ad “Shots” will run in Rep. Paul Hodes’s district and districts where Democratic members supported the bill, thanking them for their vote and highlighting what the legislation will do to rein in insurance companies, provide quality, affordable insurance options for small businesses and individuals, close the Medicare prescription drug donut hole and finally take control of health care from insurance companies and put it in the hands of American families and small businesses. 

The radio ad “Hands Off Our Health Care” will run in districts of Republicans who voted against health reform.  The ad highlights their decision to stand with insurance companies instead of middle class families and their fight to enable insurers to continue denying coverage because of pre-existing conditions and jack up premiums.  It also highlights Republicans calls to repeal the legislation, which ends these unfair insurance industry practices, lowers drug costs for seniors and gives small businesses tax credits.

“Shots” will be running in the Districts of the following 25 Democrats: Reps. Kirkpatrick (AZ-01), Mitchell (AZ-05), Giffords (AZ-08), Cardoza (CA-18), Costa (CA-20), Markey (CO-04), Grayson (FL-08), Donnelly (IN-02), Ellsworth (IN-08), Boswell (IA-03), Walz (MN-01), Oberstar (MN-08), Hodes (NH-01), Holt (NJ-12), Bishop (NY-01), Etheridge (NC NC-02), Driehaus (OH-01), Wilson (OH-06), Boccieri (OH-16), Schrader (OR 05), Spratt (SC-05), Perriello (VA-05), Connolly (VA-11), Rahall (WV-03), Kagen (WI-08)

“Hands Off Our Health Care” will be running in the Districts of 10 Republicans: Reps. Lungren (CA-03), Bono Mack (CA-45), Castle (DE-AL),  Kirk (IL-10), Cao (LA-02),  Terry (NE-02), Tiberi (OH-12), Gerlach (PA-06),  Dent (PA-15),  Reichert (WA-08).

Please see below for the script and links to the ad “Shots: Hodes”:

SAMPLE SCRIPT: DNC TV ADS: "Shots":

For decades, the insurance lobby has called the shots…putting profits before people.

But with Paul Hodes help…that’s changing.

With a law prohibiting insurance company denials if you get sick or have a pre-existing condition.

Providing quality, affordable health care options to individuals and small business owners. 

And CLOSING the Medicare prescription gap.

Congressman Hodes…thank you.

The Democratic National Committee is responsible for the content of this advertising.

Link to DNC TV AD: "Shots":

US Rep. Hodes

http://www.youtube.com/democraticvideo#p/u/13/juWMaminPqw

 

Friday
Mar262010

NHDP - Ayotte: Insurance Companies Should Deny Care to You and Your Family 

Kelly Ayotte's Health Care Repeal Would Take Away Coverage Now Guaranteed to Children and Adults with Pre-Existing Conditions
 
CONCORD - Republican senate candidate Kelly Ayotte has spent the week falling in line with Republicans in Washington and vowing to repeal health care reform if elected. Ayotte's repeal would send New Hampshire's middle-class families back to a system that lets insurance companies deny coverage to children and adults with pre-existing conditions.
 
Repealing health care reform would also mean eliminating tax credits for 34,000 New Hampshire small businesses, taking back coverage from 157,000 New Hampshire residents and re-opening the prescription drug loophole for seniors on Medicare.
 

"Kelly Ayotte wants to send us backwards to a system that puts insurance companies before middle-class families and small businesses in New Hampshire," said Emily Browne, Press Secretary for the New Hampshire Democratic Party. "Kelly Ayotte doesn't have the courage to stand up to insurance companies because she's too busy standing up for special interests and reading off the Washington GOP's talking points."

Friday
Mar262010

Daily News from the Veterans Today Network 

Mike Leon
Veterans Today Network footerVFW Officer Slams VFW's Tradewell in Testimony on Health Care
U.S. Rep Chet Edwards (D-Waco), member of the House Appropriations Committee and Chair of the House Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations Subcommittee, slammed the Veterans for Foreign Wars' (VFW) discredited attack on Health Care Reform as a "betrayal" of American veterans in a Congressional hearing as a VFW witness refused to defend his own national commander's "betrayal" remarks.

The line of attack against health care reform pushed by Thomas J. Tradewell Sr., national commander of the Veterans for Foreign Wars'(VFW) and a political opponent of health care reform, has been buried by a mountain of criticism as the VFW's political credibility has been in free fall since Thomas J. Tradewell penned his screed over the weekend that Health Care Reform harms Tricare and betrays veterans.
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