Reps. Bradley Byrne, Martha Roby give support to GOP health care bill

March 22, 2017
Representative Roby In The News

Two more members of Congress from Alabama have fallen in line behind House leadership and President Trump in backing a new national health care program.

With the support announced Wednesday by U.S. Reps. Bradley Byrne and Martha Roby, a majority of Alabama's congressional delegation have said they will vote for the bill.

The bill is expected to go before the House of Representatives in what's anticipated as a close vote on Thursday.

Byrne, R-Fairhope, and Roby, R-Montgomery, join Reps. Robert Aderholt, R-Haleyville, Bradley Byrne, R-Fairhope, and Gary Palmer, R-Hoover, in backing the bill pushed by House leaders and Trump.

U.S. Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Huntsville, has said he will vote against the bill as well as the state's lone Democrat in Congress, U.S. Rep. Terry Sewell of Birmingham.

U.S. Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Saks, has not yet announced how he will vote.

Roby spoke on the House floor Wednesday to tout the bill, saying that it "dismantles the taxes, mandates, and entitlement spending that make up the core of Obamacare" as well as cutting taxes on drugs and insurance premiums and removes employer and individual mandate penalties.

After the House speech, Roby met with Trump at the White House along with several other lawmakers and told the president she would lobby other lawmakers to support the bill, Roby Communications Director Todd Stacy said.

Despite her support, though, Roby acknowledged the bill has flaws in the speech.

"No bill is perfect," Roby said in her speech. "I'm sure if every member of this body came up with their ideal health reform bill, they'd each be pretty different. It's supposed to be that way, because we all represent different districts with different needs. There may well be some changes made here in the House or in the Senate that can make the bill better. That's part of the process, so I certainly remain open to those.
"But, Mr. Speaker, I am confident that this bill puts us on a path toward lower costs and better care - and away from government-controlled health insurance."

Byrne announced his support in an early-morning Facebook post.

"We make sure older Americans are taken care of and that the tax cuts happen sooner," Byrne said of recent changes in the bill. "We cannot pass up this opportunity to repeal and replace Obamacare."

Roby said the bill allows Republican lawmakers to keep their promises to voters.

"I've heard from countless constituents negatively impacted by Obamacare," she said. "I've listened to their stories about how higher costs and fewer choices have made it that much harder to keep their families healthy and make ends meet.
"And in response, I made a promise; the same promise President Trump and every conservative in Congress has made over and over: Give us the majority in the House and Senate, give us a Republican in the White House, and we will repeal Obamacare and replace it with reforms that work.
"So Mr. Speaker, I am pleased that we are finally in a position to deliver on that promise. The voters gave us what we asked of them, and it's only right that we keep our end of the bargain."