WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA), ranking member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, released a statement following the HELP Committee Chair’s decision to postpone Thursday’s markup of apprenticeship and workforce bills. This comes as the HELP Committee Chair announced on Monday that the markup of his partisan Primary Care and Health Workforce Expansion Act, previously scheduled for today, would be postponed until September.
“This is troubling news. Instead of marking up existing bipartisan legislation to prevent funding lapses for community health centers and several other public health programs expiring in September, the Chair chose to pursue controversial legislation outside the traditional committee process. Predictably this failed, with two markups being canceled this week.” said Dr. Cassidy. “The committee will fail if this is the way the committee is run.”
Earlier this week, Cassidy called on the Chair to markup the Community Health Care Reauthorization Act this week, bipartisan legislation that previously passed unanimously out of committee in the House of Representatives. Cassidy described it as, “our best chance to avert a funding crisis in the few legislative days we have left before the end of the fiscal year.”