Rep. Brian Mast (R., Fla.) spoke Thursday on the floor of the House of Representatives to lambast Democrats for their statements on the Republican health care bill, calling them "lies."
Mast defended the health care bill from Democratic claims that the legislation repeals the component of the Affordable Care Act that covers pre-existing conditions.
"I, too, am a person with pre-existing conditions, and I believe it's not just something I should do, it's a responsibility for me to be the staunchest advocate for people out there that have pre-existing conditions," Mast said. "And that is why I am such an ardent supporter of this bill."
Mast added that the current situation under the Affordable Care Act does not protect Americans with pre-existing conditions because the number of health insurance companies participating in the Obamacare exchanges has dramatically decreased. There are some areas of the country where there is one or zero health insurance providers.
"I think every American and every person out there with pre-existing conditions should be asking themselves, how is it that they have coverage if every single insurance provider has pulled out of the market?" Mast asked. "If there's no entity to go out there to provide insurance, how could pre-existing conditions possibly be covered?"
Mast then attacked Democrats' credibility on the issue of health care.
"This is the question every American should be asking themselves: who is it that's going out there and saying that pre-existing conditions won't be covered?" Mast said. "It is the exact same group of people that went out there and lied to the face of every single American, telling them if they like their plan they would keep their plan, if they like their doctor they could keep their doctor, that the average American family would save $2,500 or more on health insurance."
"That was a bold-faced lie, and it was orchestrated by architects who went out with the intention to prey on the American people," Mast continued. "That is who's going out there selling these lies against my party."
Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R., Wis.) and other party leaders have assured that the GOP health care bill would protect people with pre-existing conditions.
Congress is set to vote on the bill Thursday afternoon, and it is expected to pass. The bill would move onto the Senate, where several Republican senators have expressed caution about passing the House bill.
A bill — finalized yesterday, has not been scored, amendments not allowed, and 3 hours final debate — should be viewed with caution.
— Lindsey Graham (@LindseyGrahamSC) May 4, 2017