Repealing ObamaCare and creating a more effective national healthcare plan that truly works is one of his top priorities in Washington, Alabama Congressman Gary Palmer told members of several area chambers of commerce today, March 31 at the Birmingham Marriott on U.S. 280.
Addressing members of the Hoover, Greater Shelby County and Vestavia chambers at an “Eggs and Issues” breakfast, the new U.S. Representative for Alabama House District 6 talked about how he and other Republicans in Congress are trying to fix the president’s health care plan, eliminate burdensome federal regulations and rein in federal spending.
“We have a plan to replace ObamaCare with a replacement that allows people to afford to pay their healthcare and choose their doctor,” said Palmer, elected in November to replace retired Republican Congressman Spencer Bachus. “Our healthcare plan will give patients a choice and create a 21st Century healthcare plan that works.”
Palmer said ObamaCare is draining the federal budget. “I don’t know anyone who supports ObamaCare,” he said.
Palmer, who spent 24 years leading the Alabama Policy Institute, a conservative think tank based in Birmingham, serves on the House budget and governmental reform committees. He plans to use those positions to help reduce federal spending by cutting funding for agencies like the Environmental Protection Agency whose policies he says hurt states and businesses.
“Our spending is like a runaway train,” Palmer said. “You don’t stop a train on a dime,” he added, saying the federal deficit will have to be reduced over time through proper spending.
One issue Palmer spent a lot of time addressing was the federal tax code. He says 3 percent of federal workers don’t pay federal taxes, and that Democrats are trying to block Republican efforts to close those loopholes.
“When 97 percent of federal employees are paying their taxes, what’s wrong with asking the other 3 percent to do the same?” Palmer said. “I believe we need to create a fairer way to collect taxes.”
After his address, Palmer answered questions from the audience of business officials, including his thoughts on how to address overstepping by the EPA. Palmer said he feels many of the environmental issues led by the EPA should return to states like Alabama for oversight. He also feels that some of the federal dollars going to the EPA should go to under-funded agencies like the U.S. military and NASA.
Asked his thoughts about President Obama’s suggestion that the federal government require U.S. citizens to vote in elections, Palmer quipped, “If the president can’t force people to pay for health insurance, what makes him think he can make people vote?”