Lawmakers got the American Health Care Act just 72 hours ago, and to be told that it can't be amended is not how the legislative process works, former House Freedom Caucus Chairman Jim Jordan said Friday, while disagreeing with contentions that lawmakers against the bill are siding with House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and former President Barack Obama.
"We're with the American people," the Ohio Republican told CNN's "New Day" program. "We just got this bill 72 hours ago . . . I represent three quarters of a million people in the 4th District of Ohio. They want me to weigh in. I'm not on the Ways and Means Committee or the Budget Committee.
"We want to influence this bill, change this bill, make this bill consistent with what we told the voters we're going to do. I bet there's a lot of members that don't want this binary choice."
The bill, as is, does not say Obamacare will be repealed, but instead takes Medicaid expansions and extends them, said Jordan, and he wants to put legislation that was passed during the Obama administration up for consideration.
"Why don't we do what we said we were going to do and what we voted on?" Jordan said. "Clean repeal. The exact same legislation we put on President Obama's desk, let's put it on President [Donald] Trump's desk. We know we can do that."
After that happens, lawmakers can get to work bringing down the cost of health insurance for working and middle class families in the United States, said Jordan.
"This keeps too much of the structure of Obamacare," he continued. "This keeps some of the taxes, this has a 30 percent penalty for people that don't have insurance and go get insurance."
Further, Jordan told CNN's Chris Cuomo that he does not agree with him and others who see Obamacare's success reflected in the numbers of people who have signed up for government health care.
"I view success as bringing down the cost of insurance," said Jordan. "I'd much rather have families be able to go in the private market and say that policy fits needs verses this one-size-fits-all Medicaid or the one-size-fits-all of the few and limited choices people have in the Obamacare exchange."
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