John Ashcroft on Health Care

Voted against penalties on tobacco companies

The Justice Department’s crusade against Big Tobacco may end under Ashcroft. In 1998, he voted against against Sen. John McCain’s tobacco regulation bill to impose huge penalties on tobacco companies if they didn’t decrease rates of youth smoking, saying among other things that the companies shouldn’t take all the blame. “There is something that really hasn’t been talked about in the debate: individual responsibility. ... People have known there are adverse health impacts,” he said at the time.
Source:, “An Ashcroft Justice Department” Dec 23, 2000

Medicare lockbox; more funding too

Source:, campaign web site Nov 7, 2000

$150M for basic health care for uninsured

Q. Even if Medicaid and the State Children’s Health Insurance Program enroll all “eligible” children, there would still be millions of uninsured children. How do you propose insuring each and every child in America?

A. Because of our state’s limited government resources, it is important to focus on children whose families cannot afford health insurance. I support initiatives that give uninsured families more options to obtain health insurance, such as allowing full deductibility for health insurance costs for families headed by self-employed individuals, and health insurance tax deductions/credits for families who cannot obtain coverage from an employer. I continue to strongly support funding increases for consolidated health centers, which give uninsured individuals - including children - access to basic health care. Most recently I called for a $150 million increase in community health centers funding for FY2001.

Source: NACHRI Interview ( Sep 9, 2000

Voted NO on including prescription drugs under Medicare.

Vote on an amendment to establish a prescription drug benefit program through the Medicare health insurance program. Among other provisions, Medicare would contribute at least 50% of the cost of prescription drugs and beneficiaries would pay a $250 deduc
Bill HR.4690 ; vote number 2000-144 on Jun 22, 2000

Voted YES on limiting self-employment health deduction.

The Santorum (R-PA) amdt would effectively kill the Kennedy Amdt (D-MA) which would have allowed self-employed individuals to fully deduct the cost of their health insurance on their federal taxes.
Status: Amdt Agreed to Y)53; N)47
Reference: Santorum Amdt #1234; Bill S. 1344 ; vote number 1999-202 on Jul 13, 1999

Voted NO on increasing funds for Medicare prescriptions.

The Snowe (R-ME) Amdt would allow the Medicare prescription drug benefit program to be paid for by an increase in tobacco taxes.
Status: Motion Rejected Y)54; N)44; NV)2
Reference: Motion to waive Snowe Amdt #232; Bill S. Con. Res. 20 ; vote number 1999-76 on Mar 25, 1999

Voted NO on increasing tobacco restrictions.

This cloture motion was on a bill which would have increased tobacco restrictions. [YES is an anti-smoking vote].
Status: Cloture Motion Rejected Y)57; N)42; NV)1
Reference: Motion to invoke cloture on a modified committee substitute to S. 1415; Bill S. 1415 ; vote number 1998-161 on Jun 17, 1998

Voted YES on banning human cloning.

This cloture motion was in order to end debate and move to consideration of legislation banning human cloning. [A YES vote opposes human cloning].
Status: Cloture Motion Rejected Y)42; N)54; NV)4
Reference: Motion to invoke cloture on motion to proceed to S. 1601; Bill S. 1601 ; vote number 1998-10 on Feb 11, 1998

Voted YES on Medicare means-testing.

Approval of means-based testing for Medicare insurance premiums.
Status: Motion to Table Agreed to Y)70; N)20
Reference: Motion to table the Kennedy Amdt #440; Bill S. 947 ; vote number 1997-113 on Jun 24, 1997

Voted NO on medical savings acounts.

Vote to block a plan which would allow tax-deductible medical savings accounts.
Status: Amdt Agreed to Y)52; N)46; NV)2
Reference: Kassebaum Amdt #3677; Bill S. 1028 ; vote number 1996-72 on Apr 18, 1996

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