Rep. Broun: Replace Obamacare With Patient Option Act

Wednesday, 06 Mar 2013 03:45 PM

By Cyrus Afzali and John Bachman

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Georgia Republican Rep. Paul Broun said his Patient Option Act legislation is a better alternative to the Affordable Care Act and will put patients in charge of all their healthcare decisions.

Broun, who also is a physician, told Newsmax TV that his proposal would, in addition, lower the cost of insurance and all health goods and services, while also keeping the federal government from making key decisions about a person’s healthcare.

In addition to stumping for his legislation, Broun would like to see the defunding of the Affordable Care Act included as part of a deal to keep government running.

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“The American people [need to] contact their congressmen, contact their senators and say we need to defund Obamacare because it’s going to be a destroyer,” Broun said. “It will not only destroy the quality of healthcare and doctor-patient relationships, but it’s going to destroy our freedom, our economies and everything that we know is good in America.”

Just this week, former Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, a heart and lung transplant surgeon, called for transforming the nation’s healthcare system from a pay-for-service system to a pay-for-performance service model. Broun said he takes issue with that approach because decisions on effectiveness would likely be made by the federal government.

“We’ve got to take the bureaucrats’ hands off our bodies, off our healthcare decisions and give us the right to make those choices ourselves,” he said. “Dr. Frist and others are looking to government to make these decisions that we need to make ourselves. I don’t support Dr. Frist’s idea. I think it’s actually going to harm things.”

Speaking about a plan proposed by House Speaker John Boehner and others that would replace the sequester with a new continuing resolution that lessens proposed military budget cuts while avoiding a government shutdown, Broun said he opposes it because it doesn’t address issues related to Obamacare.

“It increases defense spending by $7 billion over the current level that the sequester will put in place, which is good, but that’s not enough. Under the Constitution, national defense and national security should be the major function of the federal government,” he said.

Broun, who is a member of the Naval Reserve and was deployed to Afghanistan in the summer of 2012, believes too little is being spent on the military and would prefer restricting spending in other areas and eliminating certain programs. He says the best way to avoid a future budget impasse would be for Congress to approach the federal budget much like a family approaches its own budget.

“Members of Congress should do what families do. They sit down at the kitchen table and work out differences. Let’s stop focusing on what’s best for political parties and focus on what’s best for the economy,” he said. “Let’s create jobs here in America and put in place policy like my Patient Care Act and my jobs act that would have created millions of jobs and been such a strong source of economic growth.”

He accused President Barack Obama as having an agenda that puts higher taxes on every taxpayer to support more spending.

“It’s just wrong and the American people deserve better than what he and Congress is doing,” Broun said. “We need to start working on living within our means, balancing our budget, stopping the irresponsible, irrational spending that both parties have been doing, get our economy going and creating jobs.”

Broun, who plans to run for the Senate seat currently held by Sen. Saxby Chambliss, also a Republican, said his decision to vie for the seat lies in his dedication to cutting spending.

“I was named the No.1 defender of economic freedom by the Club for Growth just last week. The reason for that and my 100 percent rating from the American Conservative Union is, I believe in the Constitution and vote according to the original intent of the Constitution,” he said.

“We’ve got to stop spending money we don’t have. We have to live within our means and we have to start developing policy that’s going to prevent the economic meltdown that both parties are leading us toward if we don’t stop it.”

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