Senator Isakson's statement on healthcare legislation

From U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson:

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., today voted against final passage of the Democrats' terribly flawed health care bill, because he believes it will raise taxes, raise premiums, cut benefits for seniors and place a massive unfunded mandate on the states.

The Senate approved the health care reform legislation by a vote of 60 to 39.

The Senate bill now must be reconciled with a different version passed by the House. If the two chambers are able to reach a compromise on a final health care reform bill, each chamber still must vote to approve that compromise.

Isakson said, "This process is not over by a long shot, and I will continue to fight against it every single day.

"Ramming through a bill drafted behind closed doors and stuffed with special deals to secure the votes of certain senators was the wrong way to go about this debate. The health care of the American people is too important for the Senate to exploit it so politically in this manner. This has not been a thoughtful process, and it is an unfortunate way to do business.

"At a time when Georgia and most states are already under tremendous budgetary stress due to the economy, the proposed expansion of Medicaid contained in this bill is a recipe for disaster. It's not fair to say we're covering more people if we are bankrupting our states through this massive unfunded mandate.

"The unintended consequences of this legislation are disastrous. This bill will only drive up the cost of health care and put a government bureaucrat between a patient and his doctor. This bill is bad for Georgia, bad for families, bad for our seniors and bad for the American economy."