State of Tennessee Archives: on Health Care


Marquita Bradshaw: Medicare for All is a good place to start

I will fight to ensure Tennesseans going bankrupt from seeking needed Medical Care is a thing of the past. Having experienced that in my own life, I know what it's like to have to suffer through our current system. Medicare For All is a good place to start, and I commit to you I will only advocate for legislation that is patient-centered. I want our system of healthcare to be guided by the health outcomes and experience of patients, not insurance company profits.
Source: 2020 Tennessee Senate campaign website MarquitaBradshaw.com Aug 26, 2020

Bill Hagerty: Trump administration did a great job on COVID-19

The Trump Administration is doing a great job preparing for the worst, to make sure the worst does not happen. Bill has worked with President Trump to push back against China as his Ambassador to Japan. In the Senate, Bill will work to keep Americans safe and that includes the threat of outbreaks, like the coronavirus.
Source: 2020 Tennessee Senate campaign website TeamHagerty.com Jul 1, 2020

Manny Sethi: Against government required vaccinations

Sethi vowed to repeal the Affordable Care Act, and told a woman who asked Sethi to explain his position on vaccines that he doesn't believe the government "has the right to tell you what you can put into your body." He said those decisions should be left between patients and their doctors.
Source: Johnson City Press on 2020 Tennessee Senate race Jun 2, 2020

Bill Hagerty: Government run health care model failed in China

We are witnessing the central government run health care model fail in China. We are fortunate to have a private sector to call upon for all-hands help and innovation when we encounter challenges beyond the government's capabilities. This situation makes clearer than ever the dangers of allowing bureaucrats in Washington, D.C. to eliminate the incentives for innovation and impose "one-size- fits-all" decisions for our individual medical needs.
Source: Breitbart News on 2020 Tennessee Senate race Mar 18, 2020

Bill Lee: Create K-12 Mental Health Trust Fund for teachers & students

We're expanding the outreach capacity of our Department of Mental Health, growing our school-based behavioral health liaison program from 36 to all 95 counties. I'm proposing the creation of a K-12 Mental Health Trust Fund of $250 million in one-time funds to support the growth and placement of mental health support services in our most-at-risk schools. It is our expectation that Tennessee will lead the nation in bringing mental health support to our teachers and to our students.
Source: 2020 State of the State Address to the Tennessee legislature Feb 3, 2020

Bill Lee: Extend postpartum coverage under TennCare to 12 months

This budget also proposes changes to our TennCare program that will benefit young families. We are launching a three-year pilot to extend postpartum coverage to 12 months for mothers covered by TennCare. We're also expanding preventive dental services to mothers on TennCare. My proposal would provide a dental and oral health benefit to pregnant women who do not currently receive dental benefits during the time of pregnancy through 60 days post-delivery.
Source: 2020 State of the State Address to the Tennessee legislature Feb 3, 2020

Manny Sethi: We need less government involvement in healthcare, not more

As a doctor, I know firsthand the huge problems with Obamacare. I'm the only candidate in this race who has read the entire bill and understands it. We need less government involvement in our healthcare, not more. Working with President Trump, I'll fight to repeal and replace it, without backing down. The fundamentals of a health care system must be based on a free market solution that allows competition across state lines. We must focus on access, quality, and transparency.
Source: 2020 Tennessee Senate campaign website, DrMannyForSenate.com Jan 12, 2020

Bill Hagerty: Return health care to patient choice in free market

Bill knows ObamaCare reduced patient choice and made health care too expensive to afford. He believes the best fix would be to reduce the federal government's power to make health care decisions for you and to return that power to the patients and the free market. Bill will fight to make health care affordable and give you--the patient--the freedom to make your health care decisions. He will work to end surprise billing and reduce the costs of prescription drugs, especially for our seniors.
Source: 2020 Tennessee Senate campaign website TeamHagerty.com Dec 24, 2019

Bill Lee: Community/faith-based care, not big government

So that more uninsured Tennesseans have access to quality primary and preventative-care services, we are providing additional funding to our health care safety net which supports community and faith-based care centers serving those who do not have health insurance coverage. We will continue to work with the General Assembly and with Washington to look for waiver opportunities that help us increase insurance coverage without big government strings attached.
Source: 2019 State of the State address to the Tennessee legislature Mar 6, 2019

Bill Lee: Expand funding for mental health treatment

I am recommending an increase of $11 million in recurring funds to our Behavioral Health Safety Net and our Regional Mental Health Institutes. These investments will help us serve thousands more of our most vulnerable Tennesseans, most of which do not currently have health insurance. Tennessee's suicide rate is 20% higher than the national average. For that reason, I'm proposing a $1.1 million investment that will expand the state's partnership with the Tennessee Suicide Prevention Network.
Source: 2019 State of the State address to the Tennessee legislature Mar 6, 2019

James Mackler: Keep rural hospitals, to serve thousands of Tennesseans

Mackler accused Trump of causing rural hospitals in Tennessee to close and taking away health care from hundreds of thousands of Tennesseans.

Mackler said Trump's tax cuts are making it easier for jobs to move overseas and called the nation's trade war with China "a disaster."

Source: The Tennessean on 2020 Tennessee Senate race Jan 8, 2019

Bill Lee: ObamaCare will not expand in Tennessee under my watch

Q: Support or Repeal ACA, aka ObamaCare? Accept ACA's Medicaid expansion to subsidize low-income participants?

Karl Dean (D): Support ACA. Expand Medicaid. "My biggest health care priority would be making sure all Tennesseans have access to quality and affordable health care."

Bill Lee (R): Repeal ACA & oppose Medicaid expansion. "ObamaCare will not expand in Tennessee under my watch."

Source: 2018 CampusElect.org Issue Guide on Tennessee Governor race Oct 9, 2018

Karl Dean: Support ObamaCare; expand Medicaid

Q: Support or Repeal ACA, aka ObamaCare? Accept ACA's Medicaid expansion to subsidize low-income participants?

Karl Dean (D): Support ACA. Expand Medicaid. "My biggest health care priority would be making sure all Tennesseans have access to quality and affordable health care."

Bill Lee (R): Repeal ACA & oppose Medicaid expansion. "ObamaCare will not expand in Tennessee under my watch."

Source: 2018 CampusElect.org Issue Guide on Tennessee Governor race Oct 9, 2018

Marsha Blackburn: Health savings accounts instead of ObamaCare

Q: Support or Repeal Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare)?

Marsha Blackburn (R): Repeal. Support health savings accounts, Association Health Plans and purchases across state lines.

Phil Bredesen (D): Initially critical, but now supports with fixes: "Stabilize what we have." On Medicare for All, might support some initial baseline coverage, then add or adjust from there.

Q: Require people to work to receive Medicaid?

Blackburn: Give states option to require this.

Bredesen: No stand found.

Source: 2018 CampusElect.org Issue Guide on Tennessee Senate race Oct 9, 2018

Phil Bredesen: Support ObamaCare, with fixes, and some Medicare-for-All

Q: Support or Repeal Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare)?

Marsha Blackburn (R): Repeal. Support health savings accounts, Association Health Plans and purchases across state lines.

Phil Bredesen (D): Initially critical, but now supports with fixes: "Stabilize what we have." On Medicare for All, might support some initial baseline coverage, then add or adjust from there.

Q: Require people to work to receive Medicaid?

Blackburn: Give states option to require this.

Bredesen: No stand found.

Source: 2018 CampusElect.org Issue Guide on Tennessee Senate race Oct 9, 2018

Bill Lee: Out-of-box approach to healthcare: create your own system

It is time to lead the way in reforming our healthcare system. Instead of relying on a new or expanded government program, we should turn our attention inward to Tennessee's own capacity to innovate. We can create greater competition for health coverage and we can challenge the traditional model for delivering healthcare. We can reform anti-competitive rules, empower medical professionals to work˙directly˙with patients and reward the innovations that save costs and time for the consumer.
Source: 2018 Tennessee Gubernatorial website BillLee.com Jul 4, 2018

Karl Dean: Expand Medicaid for low-income families

Under the Affordable Care Act, states have the option of expanding Medicaid and receiving additional federal tax dollars to provide health coverage for low-income persons and families. Karl believes our state should act immediately to do this. He supported Gov. Haslam's Insure Tennessee plan. The plan would expand coverage to those who do not fit in a category to qualify for Medicaid & do not make enough money to afford health insurance.

By not expanding Medicaid in Tennessee, the state loses $2.5 million a day of federal funding. This means billions of our tax dollars are going to other states and more than 300,000 Tennesseans have been left without affordable health insurance. Veterans and those with a mental health diagnosis are among the vulnerable populations most detrimentally impacted by this, including those in the throes of opioid addiction who need treatment.

By not serving all Tennesseans in need, our state is also at risk of receiving fewer federal dollars for Medicaid.

Source: 2018 Tennessee Gubernatorial campaign website KarlDean.com Mar 21, 2018

Larry Crim: Constituents should have a seat at the table on health care

"How about seeking input from the Constituents? We need open meetings on the Health Care Bill so constituents including families, seniors, small businesses and˙veterans can have their voices heard." He said the health care bill and Corker's comments exclusively on "the insurance market" are focused on "affordable health insurance" and fail to address˙affordable˙health care." He's on record calling for a bill to identify, provide incentives and give access to lower cost provider options.
Source: 2018 Tennessee Senatorial campaign website CrimUSSenate.com Mar 2, 2018

Larry Crim: Constituents should have a seat at the table on health care

"How about seeking input from the Constituents? We need open meetings on the Health Care Bill so constituents including families, seniors, small businesses and˙veterans can have their voices heard." He said the health care bill and Corker's comments exclusively on "the insurance market" are focused on "affordable health insurance" and fail to address˙affordable˙health care." He's on record calling for a bill to identify, provide incentives and give access to lower cost provider options.
Source: 2018 Tennessee Senatorial campaign website CrimUSSenate.com Mar 2, 2018

Diane Black: Patients should respect their doctors' religious beliefs

The Conscience Protection Act would allow health-care providers like nurses and doctors to sue if they're coerced into participating in abortions or if they face discrimination at work for refusing to do so. "It is time for this comprehensive, reasonable and modest bill to be voted on so we can allow millions of Americans who believe as I do in the sanctity of life to abide by those beliefs without having them trampled on by their own government," said Black.
Source: The Hill coverage of 2018 Tennessee Governor race Nov 8, 2017

James Mackler: Healthcare is a right

James knows where he stands on health care: it is a right. James knows that cuts to Medicaid, increases in premiums for our sick and elderly, and decreases in necessary coverage would be wrong and disastrous. It is no wonder that the American Medical Association as well as the American Hospital Association oppose the recent assaults in Congress on healthcare and the elderly.
Source: 2018 Tennessee Senatorial website JamesMackler.com Oct 1, 2017

Diane Black: Repeal ObamaCare;need market-based solution

More than six years after ObamaCare was forced into law on a party line vote, it is clear that this law is not able to live up to its most basic promises, instead resulting in higher premiums, dropped coverage, and a weaker economy. As a registered nurse for more than 40 years, I recognize the need to address problems in our health care system. We need to expand access and work to lower costs with a more patient-centered, market-based approach.
Source: 2018 Tennessee Gubernatorial website black.house.gov Aug 31, 2017

David Kustoff: Work to dismantle convoluted and expensive ObamaCare

We've taken the best healthcare system in the world and made it too convoluted and expensive. We need more choice in our health care system, including purchasing insurance across state lines.

I bet Nancy Pelosi still hasn't read the healthcare bill because she and the Democrats still think it's good for our country! I will work to dismantle ObamaCare once and for all so we can offer the best healthcare in the world.

Source: 2016 Tennessee House campaign website KustoffForCongress.com Nov 8, 2016

Bill Haslam: Must provide health coverage, if not Insure Tennessee

Last week, the decision was made [in a special session of the legislature] not to move forward with Insure Tennessee. However, that does not mean the issues around health care go away. Too many Tennesseans are still not getting health coverage they need in the right way, in the right place, at the right time. An emergency room is not the place where so many Tennesseans should be going for health care services. It's not the best health care for them, and it's costing us a lot more in the long run.

Health care costs are still eating up too much of our state's budget and impacting the federal deficit and nation's debt. If we maintained health care costs at their current levels, which we know are inflated, for the next eight years--just kept them flat--we'd eliminate the nation's deficit. To do that, we can't keep doing what we have been doing. So, though the special session has ended, I hope we can find a way to work together to address those problems.

Source: State of the State address to 2015 Tennessee Legislature Feb 9, 2015

Gordon Ball: ObamaCare is over the top, but keep the good parts

The Affordable Healthcare Act has a number of good provisions:We cannot roll back these and other necessary provisions, because they are too important for American families. However, any legislation that is over 2,200 pages long and is administered by the IRS is, from its inception, way over-the-top. We must fix this, retaining provisions that benefit citizens and throwing out the bad ones. It is inconceivable to me that anyone in Congress read all of this bill before it was passed.
Source: 2014 Tennessee Senate campaign website, GordonBallSenate.com Aug 7, 2014

Bob Tuke: National health care insurance exchange

I support a national health care insurance exchange that would provide access to everyone. This would reform the private insurance market by creating rules and standards for participating insurance plans to ensure fairness & to make individual coverage more affordable & accessible. Insurers would have to issue every applicant a policy that offers fair & stable premiums that will not depend upon health status. The plan must cover all essential medical services, including preventive & mental health care.
Source: 2008 Senate campaign website, tukefortennessee.com, “Issues” Jun 3, 2008

Don Sundquist: We must save TennCare, for children & the needy

Thanks to our TennCare program, more children are being immunized. More women seek and get prenatal care. Infant mortality is at an all-time low. Fewer people are being treated in hospital emergency rooms.

We were the first state to make health care available to every child. That’s a commitment we need to keep. It’s not just children who depend on TennCare. It’s our neighbors, our friends and our families who wouldn’t have health insurance any other way. And for every dollar that goes to care for these people, the state pays only 18 cents. TennCare must be saved.

Let me speak very plainly. If TennCare fails, our only real alternative is to drop 350,000 Tennesseans who can’t get basic, affordable health insurance. We would do our best to continue to cover our children. But we would shift to a stripped-down, managed-care program for our federally mandated Medicaid population. We will not go to a fee-for-service arrangement. That’s a bad alternative, and it’s not my choice.

Source: 2001 State of the State Address to Tennessee legislature Jan 29, 2001

  • The above quotations are from State of Tennessee Politicians: Archives.
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2020 Presidential contenders on Health Care:
  Democrats running for President:
Sen.Michael Bennet (D-CO)
V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Gov.Deval Patrick (D-MA)
Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
CEO Tom Steyer (D-CA)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
CEO Andrew Yang (D-NY)

2020 Third Party Candidates:
Rep.Justin Amash (L-MI)
CEO Don Blankenship (C-WV)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Howie Hawkins (G-NY)
Gov.Gary Johnson(L-NM)
Howard Schultz(I-WA)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
Republicans running for President:
Sen.Ted Cruz(R-TX)
Gov.Larry Hogan (R-MD)
Gov.John Kasich(R-OH)
V.P.Mike Pence(R-IN)
Gov.Mark Sanford (R-SC)
Pres.Donald Trump(R-NY)
Rep.Joe Walsh (R-IL)
Gov.Bill Weld(R-MA & L-NY)

2020 Withdrawn Democratic Candidates:
Sen.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen.Mike Gravel (D-AK)
Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
Rep.Tim Ryan (D-CA)
Adm.Joe Sestak (D-PA)
Rep.Eric Swalwell (D-CA)
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