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Cole Floor Speech on Medicare Cuts

April 5, 2010

WASHINGTON – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) made the following remarks on the House floor regarding H.R. 4872 and H.R. 3590 -- health care takeover legislation -- and his amendment to protect Medicare.  

MR COLE:  "Madame Speaker, I rise today to speak in strong opposition to the Rule and the underlying legislation.

"The Rule before us today sets yet another deplorable precedent in the House of Representatives under this Democratic-Majority. Never before have multiple restrictions like this been placed on a minority party in an all-out-effort to shut down their participation and silence the voices of the millions of Americans they represent.

Madame Speaker, the underlying legislation cuts a staggering $523 billion from Medicare. We are robbing Medicare to establish an entirely new entitlement program just as the baby boomers retire.

"Madame Speaker, 65 members, including myself, offered amendments to the Rules Committee attempting to address the numerous problems in the reconciliation package. My amendment would have kept the savings generated by Medicare cuts in Medicare - right where they belong! Unfortunately, that amendment, just like dozens of others, was defeated on a party line vote.

"Madame Speaker, Congressional Democrats continue to turn a blind eye toward the long-term unfunded obligations in Medicare in favor of their new programs and their new spending. I urge all of my colleagues to vote NO on the Rule and NO on this fiscally irresponsible measure that will bankrupt Medicare."