PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick, who represents Pennsylvania’s Eight District, talked with Dom Giordano on Talk Radio 1210 WPHT about his no vote on the Republican health care bill that passed in the House of Representatives in May, saying he broke with his party because he felt the law in question was deceptive.
“All of us agree that our health care system is broken and desperately needs to be fixed. We have one shot to get this right and we were asked to vote on a bill that we had 17 days to digest, a bill that had not been scored by the CBO, a bill that justifiably supported by less than a quarter of the American people, including less than half of Republicans. There was a lot in it that I objected to and a lot of it, if you want to know the genesis of much of my objection, you can go back to the very first bill I introduced on the floor on the House of Representatives, which was a massive government reform package. One of those components, and there are many of them, was the concept of single issue legislation, because when you try these omnibus bill, particularly on something like health care, which affects between one-fifth and one-sixth of our economy and affects 100 percent of the American people, and you try to stuff all sorts special interest provisions in them, it’s dishonest legislation. That’s the reality of it.”
Fitzpatrick also defended his vote against a proposal that would stop the military from paying for transgender service personnel’s reassignment surgery, stating that Secretary of Defense James Mattis is currently assessing the matter, and that he should make the final determination.
“The Hartzler Amendment to the NDAA, which is what we’re talking about here, was not even supposed to come up for a vote. It originally called for the discharge of all transgender service members. That was the original version…That was ruled by committee as being out of order. It was then changed to the removal of health benefits and it somehow made it to the floor over the objection, by the way, of the committee chair. This policy was implemented as an internal military policy change by Ash Carter under the Obama Administration. So, enter Secretary Mattis, who put a freeze on the program. He is currently engaged in a six month review on the effect of this program on military readiness. According to Rand, there’s several thousand, possible close to 10,000 such individuals, some of whom are currently deployed overseas. What this came down to is whether Congress should usurp the authority of Secretary Mattis, over his objection, on an issue pertaining to military readiness.”