A trio of Democratic congressmen blasted their Republican colleagues on Monday for reviving attacks against the Affordable Care Act.
The House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health held a hearing on "Protecting Americans From Illegal Bailouts and Plan Cancellations Under the President's Health Care Law." Committee members Frank Pallone (D-N.J.), Gene Green (D-Texas) and Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) gave little credence to that title, railing against the GOP lawmakers' intentions from the get-go.
"Today's hearing is nothing more than another episode in a series of Republican attacks on the Affordable Care Act, and this time it's even harder to take seriously," Pallone said.
Health Subcommittee Chairman Joe Pitts (R-Pa.) saw the matter otherwise, panning the White House for ignoring "the harsh realities of this law."
Pallone hit back, arguing that such attacks are election-driven and that GOP has presented no true health care alternative.
Among the GOP-driven suggestions is a bill introduced by Rep. Bill Cassidy (R-La.), H.R. 3522, which would grandfather in under Obamacare all group health care plans in effect in 2013. The subcommittee's press release on Monday's hearing refers to that legislation as protection from "President Obama’s broken promise that, 'If you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care plan. Period.'" (The bill would not require insurance companies to keep offering those plans.)
Green dismissed the notion of broken promises, declaring that health care benefits are spreading as a result of Obamacare. He lamented that "we're back to" a state of "how many times do we need to try to repeal the Affordable Care Act?"
"I know it's probably 50 or so, but maybe it's just election fodder that we need to have," Green jabbed.
Waxman built off that 50-votes-or-so theme, asking, "Don't we have anything better to do?" He too criticized Republicans for failing to present an alternative, questioning whether they have "any productive ideas" on the table.
"They certainly are working hard to secure their place in history as the least productive Congress in the history of this nation," Waxman said.
Watch the clip above.
Correction: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that Pitts was from Texas. He is in fact from Pennsylvania.