Not satisfied with a raft of legislative and administrative steps likely to drive up health premiums just as voters turn their attention to the November elections, a coalition of conservatives on Tuesday unveiled another attempt to kill the Affordable Care Act.
This one also has Republican fingerprints on it. The “Health Care Choices Proposal” advanced by the Health Policy Consensus Group closely tracks the so-called Graham-Cassidy healthcare bill proposed by Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Bill Cassidy (R-La.) that enjoyed a brief moment in the sun last fall before fading away. The sponsoring group comprises the Heritage Foundation, the free-market Galen Institute, the right-wing Goldwater Institute and former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-Pa.), among others.
Like Graham-Cassidy, the latest proposal would effectively do away with protections for people with preexisting medical conditions and would remove the ACA’s requirements that all health plans offer minimum essential benefits, such as hospitalization, maternity care and mental health services.
Graham-Cassidy would have eliminated the Medicaid expansion and funneled money away from states that covered their poorest residents via Medicaid, such as California, and toward those that didn’t bother, such as Texas, via a block-grant system providing each state with a capped amount of federal funding.
The new proposal is vague on how its block-grant system would work, but on the surface it has some of the same features as Graham-Cassidy. As Duke University health insurance expert David Anderson puts it, the message for Americans saddled with a healthcare law like this is: “Don’t get sick.” Read More at LA Times