Key Vote “YES” On Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) Repeal Bill

Dear FreedomWorks member,

As one of our million-plus FreedomWorks members nationwide, I urge you to contact your representative and ask him or her to vote YES on H.R. 452, the Medicare Decisions Accountability Act of 2011. Introduced by Rep. Phil Roe (R-TN), the bill would repeal the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB), a key component to ObamaCare. The IPAB is a 15-member board, appointed by the president, with unprecedented power to make binding decisions regarding Medicare without any input from Congress or the courts. While FreedomWorks’ unwavering purpose is to repeal ObamaCare in its entirety, eliminating the terrible IPAB panel would be a step in the right direction. 

IPAB will lead to government rationing and denial of care for America’s seniors. Beginning in 2015, IPAB will have the power to cut hundreds of billions of dollars out of Medicare. While savings are needed, bureaucratic rationing is the wrong approach. IPAB will have the power to unilaterally reduce doctor and hospital payments. This will lead to reduced access to care, because fewer doctors and hospitals will be willing to treat seniors. In fact, the Chief Medicare Actuary has estimated that IPAB’s cuts will cause Medicare to pay hospitals less than even Medicaid does and cause 15 percent of America’s hospitals to go out of business.

This powerful, unelected body will operate without any transparency or accountability. Contrary to the claim by HHS Secretary Sebelius that IPAB’s automatic cuts are “recommendations,” the panel’s decisions carry the force of law unless two-thirds of the House and Senate vote to stop them. Congress has also made IPAB’s decisions unreviewable by the courts. This is why former Obama Budget Director Peter Orszag has called IPAB the “single biggest yielding of power to an independent entity since the creation of the Federal Reserve” in 1913.

Today, seniors are legally required to be enrolled in Medicare and are not permitted to obtain health care outside of the bureaucratic, price-controlled Medicare system. Adding the unelected IPAB panel on top of the closed Medicare system creates the perfect conditions for care denials. Along with the rest of ObamaCare, IPAB must be repealed.

I urge you to call your representative and ask him or her to vote YES on H.R. 452, the Medicare Decisions Accountability Act of 2011. We will count their vote as a KEY VOTE when calculating the FreedomWorks Economic Freedom Scorecard for 2012. The Economic Freedom Scorecard is used to determine eligibility for the Jefferson Award, which recognizes members of Congress with voting records that support economic freedom.


Matt Kibbe
President and CEO
[Click here for a PDF version of this key vote notice.]