Nov 10, 2009
Fact Check: Joe Heck’s False Claims About Health Insurance Reform Ring Hollow
What the heck was he thinking? Leading up to the consideration of the Affordable Health Care for America Act, and immediately after its passage, Joe Heck sure had a lot to say. But, unfortunately for Heck, his claims aren’t backed up by reality.
It’s time for a Joe Heck fact check.
“Joe Heck is using false claims and fanciful rhetoric to obscure the fundamental truth: he is standing with big insurance companies and their massive profits over the interests of Nevada families,” said Andy Stone, Western Regional Press Secretary for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. “People turn to doctors for answers and they deserve better than the fabrications coming from Joe Heck.”
Heck’s Claim: This is a government takeover of health care.
FACT CHECK: The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office says there is nothing backing up the GOP claim, and the bill isn't expected to have much impact on private insurers. [FactCheck.org, 11/6/09]
Heck’s Claim: This will limit your health care choices.
FACT CHECK: The American Medical Association, whose mission is “to be an essential part of the professional life of every physician” – like Dr. Joe Heck, endorsed health insurance reform specifically noting that, “Expanded coverage and choice will empower patient and physician decision making. H.R. 3962 is consistent with our principles of pluralism, freedom of choice, freedom of physician practice, and universal access.” [American Medical Association letter to Speaker Pelosi, 11/5/09]
Heck’s Claim: This bill was supported only by Democratic party leaders.
FACT CHECK: Over 150 groups and organizations from across the country representing diverse interests and priorities all supported the passage of the Affordable Health Care for America Act, including AARP, Consumers Union, American Medical Association, American Nurses Association, American Cancer Society, and the Main Street Alliance. Even the American Osteopathic Association, of which Joe Heck is a member, endorsed the bill.
In endorsing the legislation, the AARP said, “…We can say with confidence that it meets those goals with improved benefits for people in Medicare and needed health insurance market reforms to help ensure every American can purchase affordable health coverage.” [Office of the Speaker, 11/7/09]
Heck’s Claim: The health care vote was rushed without proper time for discussion.
FACT CHECK: There were 33 detailed hearings prior to consideration of the Affordable Health Care for America Act, 120 days to review the detailed proposals, and over seven days to review the final legislation. [Office of the Majority Leader, 11/7/09] Over 11 hours of debate on the rule and the underlying health insurance reform bill were held on November 7, 2009. [Office of the Clerk, 11/7/09]