After successfully voting to repeal the government's takeover of the nation's healthcare system, Rep. Cory Gardner (R-CO) is aiding efforts to move forward with the "replace" aspect of the GOP's promise.
"We didn't vote to repeal the healthcare law because we think our system was perfect before, but there were aspects of the law that hurt the economy enough for us to say, let's start over and implement reforms that actually decrease the cost of care and don't hurt job creation," Rep. Gardner said.
Today, House Republicans voted on H.Res. 9, which instructs the relevant committees to get to work on legislation replacing the President's healthcare law. As a member of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, Rep. Gardner will be at the forefront of the process to outline replacement legislation.
At the top of Rep. Gardner's wish list is tort reform. He has been recognized on numerous occasions for his efforts to reduce frivolous litigation and lawsuit abuse, believing that capping medical malpractice damages is one important way to lower cost for doctors and patients.
Rep. Gardner is also advocating for opening up the health insurance market and allowing policies to be sold across state lines. He sponsored a bill to that effect during his time in the Colorado legislature.
"Insurers have to comply with state regulations and mandates on care, so the consequence is that there is no national market for health insurance," Rep. Gardner said. "Life insurance, for example, is regulated by states but may be purchased across state lines, so we know something like this is possible for healthcare."
A third pillar in Rep. Gardner's plan to replace the freshly repealed healthcare law involves Congress allowing small businesses and associations to pool together to obtain health insurance through their trade and professional associations.
When asked to sum up the gist of the GOP reforms likely to come out of Energy and Commerce, Rep. Gardner said, "You're going to see ideas that create competition and get government out of the way. When government gets involved in the private sector all it does is inhibit competition."