Boucher voted "no" in November, but had been listed as undecided. This report makes his position seem pretty clear:
U.S. Rep. Rick Boucher, D-Va., said Friday he could not support health care reform legislation that includes heavy cuts to Medicare, a position he has held since his first vote against the package and his party’s move to push legislation through Congress.
Boucher said he needs to see whatever deal is being cobbled together.
“I am very concerned about a number of things. First, we do not have a text of the legislation before us. That is still being discussed and negotiated. Obviously, I will withhold any judgment until I review it very carefully. I do have concerns about a number of matters I anticipate being in the draft, however,” he said.
Boucher said he is hearing that cuts to Medicare funding to help pay for the reform package “may be as great as $500 billion. That’s ‘billion’ with a ‘B.’”
A funding cut of that significance would jeopardize the financial health of hospitals and physicians in Southwest Virginia, he said.
“I am persuaded that Medicare cuts at that level would impair the delivery of health care within our region. We have a large population that receives Medicare. It is the principal source of income for our nonprofit hospitals and virtually all the hospitals in my district,” Boucher said.
“Also, so many of our doctors receive a significant part of their income from Medicare as well. So from the vantage point of our senior citizens and the vantage point of hospitals and doctors who deliver health care, these levels of Medicare funding reductions that I anticipate being in the measure are simply not acceptable, and that fact will weigh heavily in my perception of the legislation when I have the opportunity to review it.”