The US Senate has rejected a Republican plan to replace President Barack Obama’s signature healthcare policy.
The 57-43 vote defeat marks the start of a days-long debate on a sweeping overhaul that critics fear could deny healthcare to millions of Americans.
The Better Care Reconciliation Act (BRCA) was crafted over two months but attention now turns to other options. President Donald Trump has urged senators to pass a bill, without indicating which one he supports.
A repeal-only bill, which would consign so-called Obamacare to history in two years, to give time to Republicans to devise a replacement, could be debated and voted on next. But that measure – which non-partisan analysts say will take health insurance from more than 30 million people – has already failed to win enough support in the Republican party.
Eight years after they organized en masse to kill Obamacare before it became law and helped Republicans take over Congress in the process, conservative activists are having trouble galvanizing around the GOP’s best and perhaps last chance to do away with the health care act.
Activists on the right have been outmatched in energy and enthusiasm by liberal groups at a critical legislative juncture. And the mounting worry among both the conservative groups and Republican lawmakers is that the debate over the future of health care in America may soon be irreparably painted in unfavorable terms, if it hasn’t been already.
The White House is pushing for another showdown vote on repealing Obamacare next week, to coincide with President Donald Trump’s hitting the 100-day milestone in office.
Legislative text of a new deal that could revive the House Republican bid to repeal Obamacare is likely to be circulated Friday “or by the weekend,” according to two senior White House officials, with an eye toward holding a House floor vote next Wednesday or Thursday.
About 18 million people would lose or drop their health insurance in the first year after Obamacare is repealed, the Congressional Budget Office reported Tuesday.
The nonpartisan federal agency also found that health insurance premiums would spike another 20 to 25 percent, according to the new report. Within 10 years, 32 million more people would be without health insurance, the CBO projects.
Without a replacement, health care costs overall would continue to rise every year, as would the number of people going without health insurance. Premiums would continue to go up, as well.
This week, Republicans took the first step toward dismantling the Affordable Care Act: the Senate passed a budget resolution that says the best way to take a chunk out of the federal budget deficit is to defund Obamacare. The measure is set to come to a vote in the House today, and chances are it will pass there, too—even though the GOP has no clear replacement plan lined up. Which is not an ideal situation for health insurance recipients, or insurers themselves.
Here’s why. Obamacare has plenty of critics, but scrapping it in its entirety is rash and will benefit few—particularly not the over 20 million people who didn’t have healthcare coverage before it was enacted. But what seems to be in the process of happening now—-cutting off the programs’ money without changing the underlying regulations—is kind of even worse.
The race to repeal Obamacare by President-elect Donald Trump and the Republican Congress will have one immediate side effect beyond any doctor’s office: a large tax cut for the wealthiest Americans.
Urged on by Trump, the Senate overnight adopted a budget resolution that clears a path for eliminating the tax-and-spending provisions of the Affordable Care Act by simple majority vote — no Democratic cooperation required. That means repeal of two provisions targeted at high-income households: a 0.9 percent hospital insurance tax on earnings above $250,000 for couples and a 3.8 percent tax on capital gains, dividends and other nonlabor income above that same threshold.
The outcome of the repeal-and-replace Obamacare debate could affect more than you might think, depending on just how the GOP congressional majority pursues its goal.
Beyond the Affordable Care Act’s marquee achievements like guaranteeing health coverage for people with pre-existing conditions and allowing children to stay on parents’ plans until age 26, the roughly 2,000-page law created a host of other provisions that affect the health of nearly every American.
Some of these measures are evident every day. Some enjoy broad support, even though people often don’t always realize they spring from the statute.
President-elect Donald Trump warned fellow Republicans Wednesday to “be careful” in their efforts to repeal and replace Obamacare, urging conservatives not to let the pressure off Democrats.
“Republicans must be careful in that the Dems own the failed ObamaCare disaster, with its poor coverage and massive premium increases,” Trump tweeted. “Don’t let the Schumer clowns out of this web…,” he added, referring to U.S. Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer, who along with other Democrats was meeting with Obama about the law Wednesday morning.
Avik Roy recently posted a useful and highly informative tutorial on the pitfalls of simply passing the identical Obamacare repeal plan that successfully passed Congress in January 2016 and was vetoed by President Obama. Although the “repeal-and-delay” strategy seems to have been largely endorsed by Republicans in the House, Mr. Roy notes that “According to Louise Radnofsky and Kristina Peterson of the Wall Street Journal, at least three GOP senators—Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker of Tennessee, and Susan Collins of Maine—are wary of repealing the ACA’s funding streams without a replacement already worked out.”
In the interests of further illuminating what’s at stake in this effort to move American health care off the misguided path onto which Obamacare has placed it, I plan to review several “repeal-and-replace” plans to illustrate some of the trade-offs entailed in coming up with such a plan.
Republicans are about to play a game of chicken with 20 million Americans’ healthcare.
GOP lawmakers are planning to repeal the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare, in 2017 but delay the the rollback by up to three years to draft a replacement plan, according to Politico.