The Club for Growth, FreedomWorks, and the Tea Party Patriots launched the website “Obamacare Opt-Out,” urging Americans to tell their senators to include the Cruz-Lee “consumer choice” amendment in the Senate healthcare bill.
The conservative coalition launched ObamacareOptOut.com to encourage Americans to call their Senators to include the consumer choice amendment sponsored by Sens. Mike Lee (R-UT) and Ted Cruz (R-TX). The amendment would allow insurance companies to offer healthcare plans that do not comply with Obamacare regulations as long as they offer plans that do comply with the Obamacare rules.
Former Sen. Jim DeMint, now a senior adviser to the Convention of States, chided the current Senate healthcare bill, otherwise known as the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA). DeMint said that the current BCRA is “trying to fix Obamacare.”
DeMint added that the Cruz-Lee amendment could save Americans from skyrocketing premiums. He said, “We can’t have a complete repeal of Obamacare, but we can take the approach of Rand Paul, Mike Lee, and Ted Cruz who have been working on this consumer freedom idea to give people the opportunity to opt out and give states the opportunity to create a private insurance market where choices and free markets can thrive.”
“We are challenging the White House and Congress to repeal Obamacare or at least give Americans the option to have the choice to have cheaper plans,” DeMint added.
David McIntosh, president of the Club for Growth, explained that despite the Cruz amendment’s criticisms, it does not rescind protections for pre-existing conditions. McIntosh explained:
Americans have been promised that Republicans would repeal Obamacare and when we have a Republican in the White House he would sign the bill and the deal would be done. The House passed their version and now the Senate finds itself unable to get the 50 Republican votes to do the deed. We think they should do a complete repeal; we support the Cruz-Lee amendment, we call it the ‘opt out’ amendment. Several conservative groups have announced that we will push to have Americans contact their senators and include the opt-out amendment. We think it’s a pathway forward I don’t see an excuse to be against this amendment. It keeps protections for pre-existing conditions and other critical health needs and everyone will get their healthcare.
The rest of the country will once again have affordable health insurance because of the Cruz-Lee amendment.
Jenny Beth Martin, one of the Tea Party Patriots co-founders, said that the Cruz-Lee amendment is a “no-brainer and a common-sense solution.” Martin added, “The least they can do is give us the option in health insurance for our families and for ourselves. We support the Cruz-Lee amendment and see it as a step in the right direction to repeal Obamacare.”
Jason Pye, the vice president for legislative affairs for FreedomWorks, noted that every Republican senator except for Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) voted for the 2015 full Obamacare repeal bill. Pye explained:
I think with the Better Care Reconciliation Act with the Cruz-Lee amendment is the minimum that amounts to something positive for us to get in a supportive posture. The other bill we could support is the 2015 bill that actually repeals most of Obamacare, which was supported by every single Republican in the Senate conference except for Susan Collins and Sen. Mark Kirk who’s no longer in the Senate. Right now it seems that a lot of members cast a fraudulent vote in 2015 and I think that is completely unacceptable to our grassroots. We have to expose everyone for those votes and now some senators now actually like Obamacare. We will only accept the BCRA with the Cruz-Lee amendment or the 2015 repeal bill.
David McIntosh declared that Senate Republicans must take action to repeal Obamacare. McIntosh said, “I think that this is a must do for Senate Republicans, you know it was painful getting it through the House but I think for the entire Senate Republican conference, it’s a must do, failure is not an option.”