Voted “No” on H.R. 596, H.R. 50, and H.R. 527

2/11/2015

Last week, the House voted on three bills: a bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act (H.R. 596), the Unfunded Mandates Information and Transparency Act (H.R. 50), and the Small Business Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act (H.R. 527). I voted no on all three bills.

H.R. 596: Would completely repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that was signed into law in 2010. This is the 56th time in four years the House has voted to repeal the health care law or parts of it, including three votes to repeal the law entirely.

The repeal of the ACA under H.R. 596 would result in 19 million people losing their coverage altogether and effectively end federal funding for programs such as the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) that benefits more than 8 million kids in the United States. Thousands of El Pasoans are already benefiting from coverage under the ACA and I could not support legislation such as H.R. 596 that would do otherwise. The ACA is far from perfect and needs improvements. I will continue to work with my colleagues to find ways to improve the law.

H.R. 50: Would radically alter the current process by which agencies implement laws passed by Congress. H.R. 50 would tilt the process toward well-connected interests and away from the public interest by allowing private companies the opportunity to challenge regulations prior to the general public even being provided notice of the proposed content of the rules. Agencies have a statutory duty to carry out the laws as written by Congress. This process should be open and transparent and balance the cost of any new regulations against their benefit. It should not, however, allow special interests a seat at the table that is not available to other entities or citizens.

H.R. 527: Similar to H.R. 50, this legislation would add new layers of procedural requirements that would significantly undermine the ability of federal agencies to issue new rules and regulations. Especially for agencies such as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), H.R. 527 would impede their ability to develop new rules — and enforce existing ones — that protect our environment and ensure the safety of Americans throughout the United States.

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