New 3rd District congressman wants health care law repealed
The first legislative task of the new congressman for the Roaring Fork Valley and Garfield County is to try to repeal the federal health care law approved last year.
U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton is a co-sponsor in HR2, a bill introduced by Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA) to repeal the health care law favored by President Obama and approved by Congress after a controversial debate last year.
Tipton, a Republican from Cortez, defeated Democrat incumbent John Salazar for the 3rd Congressional District Seat in the November race. The sprawling district includes the Aspen and Pitkin County as well as Glenwood Springs and Garfield County. Tipton took office last Wednesday.
There are many aspects to the health care law that are acceptable to Tipton, such as expanding access to coverage for more Americans and attempting to make coverage more affordable, said the Josh Green, the Congressman’s press secretary. But overall, Green said, the law is too flawed.
Tipton believes health care decisions should be in the hands of a patient and doctor, without government intervention, according to Green. Tipton also wants to create a system where insurance carriers compete for health care coverage, much like carriers do for home and auto insurance, Green said.
In a statement, Tipton said, “Something needs to be done on health care reform. However, the health care law, in its current state, missed the intended mark and has done more to kill jobs and grow government than to improve health care access and affordability.”
Tipton was one of 151 co-sponsors of the bill as of Friday. It is seen as largely symbolic because leaders in the Democratic-controlled U.S. Senate said they won’t repeal the legislation. Republicans took control of the U.S. House in the November election.
The health care debate was at the center of the opening agenda for the new Congress until Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords was shot and critically wounded in Tucson on Saturday. The health care debate pegged for Wednesday has been postponed. The tragedy in Arizona is expected to tone down the rhetoric in discussions in Congress, at least for a while.
In addition to co-sponsoring the bill to repeal the health care law, Tipton co-sponsored a second bill that tries to repeal a section of the health care law. The bill introduced by U.S. Rep. Dan Lungren, R-Calif., aims at repealing a provision of the health care bill that requires businesses to complete 1099 tax forms on basic expenses such as Internet service, telephone bills and office supplies. Green said Tipton views the requirement as “a huge red tape burden” for small business owners.
Tipton feels “we should be creating job, not mountains of paperwork,” Green said.
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