Press Room

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – U.S. Senator Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK) released the following statement today regarding provisions slipped into the so-called “Cromnibus” bill designed to ratify and fund the new health law:

“Using the end-of-the-year spending bill as a Trojan horse to fund the new federal health care law is hardly the mandate from the November elections. Yet, that is what Congress is doing through the must-pass spending bill to fund government operations. We need to repeal, not ratify, the new health law and replace it with health reforms that will truly lower costs and improve health care quality and access.”

“The bill provides $19 million to the IRS for dictating health insurance under the new health law -- a small but significant opening salvo in the push to give IRS tax bureaucrats power over Americans’ health care. The legislation also spends $12 million on an unelected panel of bureaucrats who will issue costly mandates, make coverage decisions for all Americans, and could deny patient choice under the guise of ‘prevention.’

“The bill also provides a fat $3.6 billion check for Dr. Donald Berwick, the new head of the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, to be used for non-descript ‘program management.’ The fact that Dr. Berwick continues to evade questions from members of the press and public raises serious questions about his intended purpose for these funds.

“Other funding for the new health law in the bill seems to reflect the desire of congressional appropriators to micromanage and make decisions in areas in which they have limited knowledge and expertise. For instance, the health law provides $750 million in 2011 to a prevention and public health slush fund – all of which is earmarked by this bill primarily for new health reform programs. Rather than allowing public health experts to allocate funding to the most promising public health strategies, the appropriations committee has decided which public health programs to fund and directed significant new funding to build sidewalks, jungle gyms and swing sets.

“Members of Congress who campaigned on defunding the misguided health law Congress passed last year should oppose this trillion-dollar spending bill. We already know the health law isn’t working. Members who supported it are guilty of misleading advertising. During the last six months we have seen health insurance premium increase, not decrease, because of the new law. It’s time for Congress to extend current tax rates, pass a clean spending bill – a ‘continuing resolution’ - without extraneous and vague health care provisions, and go home.”

Date Title
12/16/14 Dr. Coburn on Tax Extenders: Washington’s Christmas Tree For Special Interests
12/16/14 Dr. Coburn's Statement on Protecting Veterans and Taxpayers
12/16/14 Senators Baldwin and Coburn Applaud Commitment to Enhance Access to HIV Drugs in Developing Countries
12/16/14 Coburn Introduces Bill to Protect and Strengthen the Social Security Disability Insurance Program
12/9/14 Coburn Releases Report Decoding the Tax Code
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11/18/14 Reps. Issa, Gingrey, and Sen. Coburn: GAO Study Finds Government’s Data Quality for Official Time is Unreliable
11/10/14 Value of Terrorism Prevention Centers Remains Unproven
Date Title
10/30/14 Wastebook 2014 Videos
10/29/14 Coburn “Concerned” With White House Reaction to Cyber Breach
10/22/14 Wastebook 2014: What Washington doesn't want you to read.
10/1/14 New Report Details Millions Spent on Unnecessary Transport of Surplus Vehicles From Afghanistan
Date Title
9/26/14 GAO: Federal Government Underreports Data Center Cost Savings by Billions
9/23/14 Statement by Senator Tom Coburn on the Recent Washington Post Story about the Department of Homeland Security
9/22/14 GAO: Long-term Viability of DHS Consolidation in Question
9/22/14 Bipartisan Bill to Consolidate Federal IT Infrastructure, Save Up to $3 Billion Passes Senate
9/19/14 Senate Approves Carper, Coburn Legislation to Curb Improper Payments to Deceased Individuals
9/19/14 Bipartisan Legislation Would Require State Representation on Federal Banking Board
9/9/14 Reducing Insurance Subsidies for Wealthy Farmers Could Save Hundreds of Millions Annually
Date Title
8/29/14 New Health Benefit For Temporary Federal Employees May Violate Federal Law
8/28/14 Oklahoma Delegation Responds to Obama Administration’s Failure to Grant ESEA Extension
8/13/14 GAO Report Confirms Need for Additional Oversight of Medicare Claims Reviews
8/12/14 Over 600 Illegal Immigrants with Prior Criminal Convictions Released into the U.S.
8/10/14 Big Banks Claim Millions of Dollars in Tax Credits Intended For Poor Communities
8/8/14 Members Call on OMB Director to Address Concerns of Inspectors General
8/4/14 GAO: $619 Billion in Government Spending Never Disclosed on Transparency Website