Build Back Better Act

Floor Speech

By: Ron Kind
By: Ron Kind
Date: Aug. 12, 2022
Location: Washington, DC


Mr. KIND. Madam Speaker, I thank the gentleman for yielding.

Madam Speaker, as a dear friend of Jackie Walorski, I share in the grief of her passing and her staff's passing. It is very tragic.

Madam Speaker, this Inflation Reduction Act is historic legislation. It puts people over politics by lowering families' kitchen-table costs from prescription drugs to their energy expenses, creates millions of good-paying jobs, delivers the most significant action to combat climate change when Mother Nature is screaming at us to take action today, and it substantially reduces the deficit by over $300 billion.

Now, on that last point, Madam Speaker, not once has a Republican-led Congress brought a reconciliation bill to the floor that was paid for, let alone reduces the national deficit.

In fact, as an example, when they passed their prescription drug bill in 2004, not only did they not pay for it, not one nickel of it was offset. Over $400 billion, the largest expansion of entitlement funding since the creation of Social Security and Medicare, but there were no offsets.

When we passed the Affordable Care Act a little over 10 years ago, not only did we pay for it, but we also reduced the deficit. Just this week, it was announced that health uninsured rates is at an all-time historic low for our country, no less due to that Affordable Care Act.

Madam Speaker, they made that prescription drug bill even worse when they passed it by inserting language in it that specifically made it illegal for us to discuss prices or negotiate prices with the drug companies. This bill changes that today by allowing once and for all some price negotiation with the drug companies to deliver real relief for our seniors.

Madam Speaker, I encourage my colleagues to support this legislation.