Posted: 7:51 am Tuesday, November 29th, 2016
By Jamie Dupree
President-Elect Donald Trump has chosen Rep. Tom Price (R-GA) for the job of Health and Human Services Secretary, giving the position to a veteran member of Congress who has been a frequent critic of President Obama’s health reform plan.
“Chairman Price, a renowned physician, has earned a reputation for being a tireless problem solver and the go-to expert on healthcare policy,” Mr. Trump said in a written statement issued this morning.
“There is much work to be done to ensure we have a health care system that works for patients, families, and doctors,” the Georgia Republican said of his selection.
Price, who has represented a district in the northern suburbs of Atlanta since being elected in 2004, has pressed fellow Republicans for several years to vote on a place to replace Obamacare.
Last year, Price unveiled the “Empowering Patients First Act of 2015,” which first repeals the Obama health reforms, does away with the government mandate for health insurance, and then enacts a series of GOP-backed ideas on health care coverage.
“We want a system that is affordable for everybody, that is accessible for everybody,” Price said at a rally for Trump in Pennsylvania on November 1, as he denounced dramatic increases in the premiums for those buying insurance through government insurance exchanges.
“This is lunacy; this is what happens when you put the government in charge,” Price said before introducing Trump to the crowd.
A basic rundown of Price’s plan to replace the Obama health reforms can be found here.
“With a background in medicine and his time as a surgeon, I know Tom would be a great asset to the administration,” said Rep. Billy Long (R-MO).
This pick would suggest that Trump is serious about dismantling Obamacare and replacing it with a market-based alternative https://t.co/tsP2YllwOF
— Lanhee J. Chen (@lanheechen) November 29, 2016
But a vow by the President-Elect to make changes to the Obama health law is easy – getting them through the Congress may be much more difficult, as Price has experienced first hand in recent years.
About the Author
Jamie Dupree is the Radio News Director of the Washington Bureau of the Cox Media Group and writes the Washington Insider blog. A native of Washington, D.C., Jamie has covered Congress and politics in the nation’s capital since the Reagan Administration, and has been reporting for Cox since 1989.