IN Focus: Brooks on healthcare debate, fight against opioids

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INDIANAPOLIS - On this week's edition of IN Focus, we sit down with Rep. Susan Brooks (R-IN) to discuss several issues in the news, including the emerging compromise to stabilize the health care markets and the fight against opioids.

Brooks was also asked about the controversy over the President's calls of condolence to families of fallen service members.

"I think it is very important the President reaches out to the family members of those who have been killed in action," said Brooks. "I'm certain that he would never intend to offend anyone he was calling. I'm sure they were very difficult conversations... it's just unfortunate this has become a political issue and I don't think it should be."

On the topic of opioids, Brooks said she was eagerly anticipating the President's expected announcement next week officially declaring a national emergency, a move the President first hinted at weeks ago.

"It takes a lot longer than even I would like to get the federal agencies aligned sometimes to work together on a strategy," said Brooks. "We've got to find ways to release more funds to put towards this emergency."

Brooks also addressed the 60 Minutes report which found that Congress helped disarm the Drug Enforcement Administration during the height of the crisis.

"DEA needs all the resources and tools that we can provide them, and if for some reason this legislation had the unintended consequence of taking tools away from DEA, then we need to fix it," said Brooks.

On the healthcare debate, Brooks said she wants to make sure people continue to have access to the Healthy Indiana Plan, and while she wants a 'different way forward' on health care, she also said she wanted to see something done to stabilize the health insurance markets.

"Quite frankly, your guess is as good as mine whether we are going to move legislation," said Brooks. "But I do believe it is important to stabilize the markets, and whether or not that will happen with the subsidies being put back in our budget package, or whether or not the Alexander-Murray bill will be brought to the Senate, I can't quite frankly predict right now."


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