Blitzer Blitzes Collins

Asks if he read the language of the AHCA

Richard Root
May 05, 2017 - 6:26 am

(WBEN) - Congressman Chris Collins is being raked over the coals for admitting on CNN he didn't read the entire American Act Healthcare Act before passing it yesterday.  However, the same thing happened when Obamacare was rolled out.

Congressman Chris Collins said on CNN yesterday "I have to rely on my staff, and I can probably tell you that I read every word and I wouldn't be telling you the truth nor would any other member."

Which seems more than a little like Democrat Senator Tom Carper talking to CNS News back in 2009 "they might say that they're reading it, they might say that they're understanding it, but that would probaly be the triumph of man's hope over experience.  It's hard stuff to understand." 

What Wolf Blitzer asked Congressman Collins specifically was if Collins had read the language of the bill. As it turns out, lawmakers often don't read the actual language of bills, citing various reasons like the legal language is too dense and time-consuming.



"I don't think you want me to waste me time to read every single word in the healthcare bill..." said Democrat Senator Max Baucus, one of the architects of Obamacare, during a town hall Fox News captured back in 2010.

"Experts know what the heck it is. We hire experts, they're over here, they work me." Baucus explained.

The issue of reading a bill came up in 2009 prior to the house passing what became Obamacare.  The debate over reading a bill before voting on it raged from the summer of 2009 through well beyond when Obamacare was signed into law in March 2010.

Over 80,000 people signed a petition to force lawmakers to read entire bills before they could vote on them.  There were angry people at town-halls. Barack Obama the candidate had promised voters the public would have at least five days to read a healthcare bill before it would be voted on.  When it was coming down to the wire in the summer of 2009, the preview time was reduced to 72 hours, the so-called "three day rule."  

Before the vote on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which was what Obamacare was called in the senate, Democrat Senator Tom Carper told no one plows through the actual language of a bill

"I don't expect to actually read the legislative langauge, because reading the legislative language is one of the most confusing things I've read in my life." 

For what it's worth, Democrats on the Senate Finance Committee voted to not allow the actual langauge of Obamacare be made available to the public just days before it was voted on in the house.


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