Vitter talks ‘Obamacare’, RESTORE Act at July 2 Town HallJul 6th, 2012 | By admin | Category: News
Fresh after the Supreme Court ruling on the Affordable Health Care Act, Senator David Vitter hosted a Town Hall meeting in Chalmette at the Council Chambers July 2, informing the public of his stance on the healthcare industry overhaul, providing an update on his policy victories from the 2012 session.
Vitter said that the new healthcare reform plan “is bad policy and is making a difficult situation even worse”.
“I disagree with the Supreme Court decision,” Vitter stated. “It was, quite frankly, a goofy decision, particularly when you look at how the court bent over backward to rewrite the law in order to uphold it.”
When an audience member asked what he and fellow opponents to the policy planned to do instead, particularly in regard to pre-existing conditions, Vitter said that the current plan wasn’t “tweakable”. Instead he believes that repealing and replacing the massive bill with several other smaller bills which address specific issues would be more efficient.
“Start with five bills, start with real problems— like pre-existing conditions— and targeted solutions,” Vitter explained.
Vitter also provided a brief overview of his policy victories during this past legislative session including the passage of the RESTORE Act, which designates 80 percent of BP’s Clean Water Act violation fines to Gulf Coast states.
“Because Louisiana was the hardest hit state, we’re getting more than any other state,” Vitter said. “It could be upwards of 20 billion, and Louisiana gets the most.”
Candace Watkins, Director of Community Development, asked how long it would take for the states to see funding come in. Vitter answered that fines are currently being totaled, but it could take up to five more years for the states to start to get their share of the money.
Among other notable achievements from the 2012 Legislative Session was the reauthorization of the National Flood Insurance Program, and the passage of the Highway Bill which he is expecting to bring in $680 million each year in federal highway dollars to Louisiana.
Vitter explained that before the passage of the Highway Bill, Louisiana was getting 90 cents for every dollar paid in gas tax to the Federal Government, now the state will be getting $1.02. Additionally, Vitter said that states will have more flexibility to spend state transportation funds.