Special to the Journal
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Sanford D. Bishop (GA-02) opposed House Joint Resolution (H. J. Res.) 59, The Continuing Resolution for Fiscal Year (FY) 2014. The legislation linked the continued funding for most government operations through December 15, 2013 to permanently defunding the Affordable Care Act. In addition, H. J. Res. 59 continues the harmful sequester cuts to vital programs affecting veterans, students, senior citizens, and low-income children. According to the Congressional Budget Office, the continuance of sequestration will cost the nation up to 1.6 million jobs by the end of FY 2014 and seriously harm the economy. The legislation was approved by a vote of 230 to 189.
“Our nation’s economy and the continued functioning of the federal government should not be held hostage to proponents of sequestration and defunding health reform,” said Congressman Bishop. “I remain hopeful that cooler heads ultimately will prevail and a clean continuing resolution that simply funds the government without any harmful provisions soon will be enacted. The American people deserve better than this partisan brinksmanship.”
Defunding the Affordable Care Act would wreak havoc on millions of seniors, people with disabilities, children, and pregnant women by disrupting provider payments under Medicare, Medicaid, and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). It also would end the Medicare benefit improvements enacted under the health care law such as additional prescription drug coverage, the annual wellness exam, and free preventive care.
In addition, continuing the sequester cuts for FY 2014 would mean a significant degradation of our military’s readiness, five million fewer meals to low-income seniors through Meals on Wheels, 57,000 fewer children in Head Start and Early Head Start, and a $1.5 billion reduction in life saving research at the National Institutes of Health.