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Hoyer Joins "The Bruce DePuyt Podcast" to Discuss Open Enrollment, Republicans’ Tax Bill, Puerto Rico

Wanted to be sure you heard Congressman Steny H. Hoyer (MD-05) on “The Bruce DePuyt Podcast.” Congressman Hoyer joined Bruce to discuss a wide range of topics, including the current open enrollment period, the harmful effects of Republicans’ tax bill on Maryland families, and his recent trip to Puerto Rico. Click here to listen to the podcast, or see below for excerpts from the interview:

On Republican Sabotage of the Affordable Care Act and Open Enrollment

“I think it’s very unfortunate that this Administration, and frankly Republicans in Congress, have done everything they can to undermine the confidence of insurance companies in the stability of the market, which has led to much higher premiums because they’ve had to price their product thinking the worst will happen.”

On the 2018 Open Enrollment Period

“I would urge everybody who has a policy on the Exchange, or wants to look at a policy on the Exchange, it has been shortened 45 days, it’s been cut in half. But from November 1 to December 15 is the open enrollment period. I would urge everybody who needs insurance, wants insurance, or has insurance to go on HealthCare.gov and see what their options are. Because circumstances have changed, and prices may have changed, and coverage may have changed.”

On the Republican Tax Bill

“I think they are having real trouble. And they’re handling this in a fashion like they handled the repeal of the Affordable Care Act, which they failed. And I think they are going to fail in this effort.”

“There are no hearings - no citizens are going to be given the opportunity to come in and testify about this bill, no suggestions will be heard…They are rushing to judgment. One rushes to judgment when he doesn’t want people to find out what he is doing…I think this bill is going to create about $1.5 - $2.5 trillion in additional debt from a party that says they want to be the fiscally responsible party. And most of that money is going to go to the wealthiest people in America…This is a bill that is not going to help working people in America, but is going to be a bonanza for people at the upper end of the scale.”

On Recovery in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the Federal Government’s Response

“We are not going to abandon those Americans who live in Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands. They have been devastated by one of the worst storms in history. I was down there last weekend with the Majority Leader – Mr. [Kevin] McCarthy – and we saw extraordinary devastation. People who were unable to get water, food, medical – it is now a month after Maria and six weeks after Irma. Irma and Maria both hit the Virgin Islands head on. Now Irma skirted Puerto Rico, but Maria hit head on. And as we want to make sure that the citizens are made whole in Houston, and in Florida, we need to do the same for our fellow citizens in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.”

“I talked to Governor [Ricardo] Rosselló and he didn’t think it was a 10 either, and it wasn’t a 10. That’s not to say there aren’t some people doing some very hard work with FEMA, in FEMA, and in our armed forces. There are, there are some people doing some very good work.”