WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) appeared on Fox News’ ‘Hannity,’ ‘Fox and Friends’ and Fox Business’ ‘Mornings with Maria’ to discuss his efforts on health care reform, including the Consumer Freedom amendment. According to a new report conducted by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Consumer Freedom amendment expands coverage by more than two million individuals and reduces health insurance premiums by more than $7,000 per year. Sen. Cruz also discussed his provision that will allow for the use of pre-tax dollars in health savings accounts to pay for health insurance premiums, which will result in significant savings for consumers.
On ‘Hannity’ Sen. Cruz highlighted the report from HHS on Consumer Freedom Amendment, and reiterated his commitment to delivering on the promises made to the American people.
“HHS studied the Consumer Freedom option. It concluded you would see 2.2 million more people get insurance. You know how the Democrats and the media are always attacking us saying people are losing coverage? Consumer Freedom expands coverage. More people get health insurance. And then what happens to premiums is dramatic. For people that choose the Freedom Plans, that buy a plan off the exchange without the Obamacare mandates, their premiums would drop over $7,000 a year. And for those who decide to stay on the Obamacare exchanges, because of the power of competition, their premiums drop by over $5,500 a year. That’s real money in people’s pockets.”
Sen. Cruz continued, “The message that I’m conveying to my colleagues is real simple: let’s do what we said we would do. For seven years we’ve campaigned on repealing Obamacare. We’ve got the chance to do it. The House has passed a repeal bill, it’s in the Senate, the president is ready to sign it and it’s up to the Senate Republicans. We’re either going to step up to the bar and keep our word, or we’re going to look the voters in the eye and break our word. I hope it’s not the latter.”
When asked on ‘Fox and Friends’ on whether the Senate will come together to repeal and replace Obamacare, Sen. Cruz shared his efforts to reduce premiums for hardworking Texans.
“I believe we can get to yes,” Sen. Cruz said. “I think there is a path to get to yes. I think we’re close, I think there’s a lot of common ground. There are a handful of holdouts still but I believe we can come together, and I think we have to. The way we come together, the way we bring together Senators all across the ideological spectrum is focus on lowering premiums. That the biggest reason are unhappy with Obamacare, is that it’s made their premiums skyrocket. You know I hear this in Texas all the time, where Texans say ‘I can’t afford health insurance.’ And if we’re lowering premiums, that’s a win for everyone. Now how do you do that? You lower premiums through more competition, more choices, more options and more freedom.”
Sen. Cruz continued, “And so the amendment that I’ve introduced that is in the base bill, is called the Consumer Freedom amendment and what it says is you the consumer should have the freedom, the power to choose the health insurance you want. If you want to buy a plan subject to all the Obamacare mandates, you can buy that. They’ll be on the market, they’ll be offered. That choice is there for you. But you should also have the choice to buy other plans that are not mandated by the federal government.”
On ‘Mornings with Maria,’ Sen. Cruz highlighted his efforts to bring together Republicans from across the ideological spectrum in the Senate to lower health insurance premiums and expand health savings accounts.
“If premiums go down, and don’t just go down a little, but down a lot, that’s a big win,” Sen. Cruz said. “It’s a big win for conservatives, but it’s a big win for moderates. It’s a big win for everyone in the party because it’s a win for our constituents. Obamacare, the average families’ premiums have risen over $5,000 a year. With Consumer Freedom, not only do they stop rising, they drop $7,000 a year. And then on top of that, another amendment that I’ve introduced that’s in this bill is an amendment to allow people to use health savings accounts to pay for your premiums. Right now that’s illegal you can’t do that. Now why does that matter? Because a health savings account is pre-tax. That means that’s an immediate cut for millions of people of 20 to 30 percent in your effective premium rate. Those two together are all about really honoring the promise we made to get the government off your back and make health care more affordable for families who really need it.”
(Press release from the office of Senator Ted Cruz)