News Blog

Sen. Murray cites Bellingham woman's story in speech about Affordable Care Act

WASHINGTON - U.S. Sen. Patty Murray talked about a Bellingham couple finally able to get health care during her speech Thursday, Feb. 27, on the Senate floor.

Murray, D-Wash., was highlighting the successes of the Affordable Care Act. She focused on examples of people "whose lives have been changed" by the Washington Healthplanfinder, which has been used by more than 400,000 state residents to sign up for free or low-cost health care coverage.

Here are excerpts from the section talking about Susan Wellman from Bellingham:

"So M. President, I'd like to speak today about some people in my home state of Washington whose lives have been changed by the Affordable Care Act, people whose stories have too often been ignored in the daily back and forth here in Washington D.C.

"I know several of my colleagues are here today to do the same, but before I start, I'd like to invite some of my Republican colleagues to turn off FOX News, turn off Rush Limbaugh and listen to real-life stories of real-life Americans impacted by this law.

"I also encourage them to listen to some of the men and women in their own states, because the stories I've heard are not unique.

"Mr. President, I'll start with the story of Susan Wellman from Bellingham, Washington.

"Because Susan is self-employed, she has had to pay for individual insurance, and every year, she's watched her health care costs rise higher and higher.

"It got to the point where she was paying $300 monthly premiums, with an $8000 deductible, all for a plan she described as "paying for nothing."

"So, as soon as Susan could access health care through the Washington state exchange, she jumped at the chance.

"Susan spoke on the phone with real, live person, and she was able to sign up for an affordable plan in a matter of minutes.

"Now, Susan is on a plan that costs her $125 a month, instead of $300.

"It's a plan that has a $2000 deductible that she says actually pays for things.

"And guess what? She can afford to go to the doctor.

"Not just in the case of an emergency, but for a physical or a mammogram that could save her life, not to mention thousands and thousands of dollars in health care costs.

"That kind of preventive care is good for Susan. It's good for her family. And it's also good for this country, because when more people have access to preventive care, it makes health care cheaper for every single one of us."


U.S. Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., talks about how a Bellingham woman benefitted from the Affordable Care Act during her speech on the Senate floor Thursday, Feb. 27. NOTE: The example from Bellingham begins at about the 4:30 mark.