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McConnell's Unbelievably Reckless Plan B: Repeal ACA With Nothing to Replace It

18 Julio 2017, 10:47 | Bibiana Flor

McConnell's Unbelievably Reckless Plan B: Repeal ACA With Nothing to Replace It

McConnell's Unbelievably Reckless Plan B: Repeal ACA With Nothing to Replace It

Two more Republican senators came out against his bill to overhaul the Affordable Care Act, effectively dooming the latest version.

With Republican Senators Mike Lee and Jerry Moran joining Senators Susan Collins and Rand Paul in opposition - and amid a solid wall of opposition from Democrats - McConnell no longer had enough votes to pass a Republican healthcare bill in the 100-member Senate.

After the three Republicans announced their no votes, Maine Independent Sen.

Lee, one of the most conservative members of the Senate, had championed a proposal that would allow insurers to sell low-priced, stripped-down plans - an idea that ended up being added to the latest version of McConnell's bill.

McCain has been among the more moderate Republicans who have joined several GOP governors in opposing the Republican health care bill's proposed cuts to Medicaid.

McConnell responded that he will push the Senate to pass a bill that would repeal the Affordable Care Act - with a two-year delay - as a substitute. But the first amendment that McConnell will offer is one that strikes the entire House bill, and replaces it with the repeal bill from 2015. John McCain, R-Ariz., underwent surgery last week. He further stated in one of the tweets that Democrats obstruct Republicans and they "need more victories next year". Fellow Republican Sen. Rob Portman of OH also says a repeal bill would add more uncertainty and cause higher premiums.

The transition period is a stark change from a hoped-for quick repeal and replace of Obama's signature legislation, a goal that seemed possible once Republican President Donald Trump took office.

"If it is a bill that simply repeals, I believe it will add even more uncertainty and the potential for Ohioans to pay even higher premiums, higher deductibles", Portman told reporters.

The failure suggests an inability by Trump, a political neophyte who often highlighted his lack of connections to establishment Washington, to get members of his own party to fall into line.

McConnell said in a statement, the Senate would instead continue their work on "legislative items and nominations". The CBO separately projected that 22 million and 23 million more people would be uninsured under the Senate and House replacement bills, respectively. Repealing the law was a top priority for Trump and Republicans in Congress, who say it has driven up premiums and forced consumers to buy insurance they do not want and can not afford.

But working under reconciliation means it's an open question if lawmakers can actually undo the biggest parts of Obamacare, like the requirement everyone get insurance and the requirement insurers accept people with preexisting conditions.

Nonetheless, few Republicans are willing to come out publicly to attack the president's leadership - as one GOP staffer told Ball, "it's just easier to attack people without 13 million Twitter followers".

Many Republicans worry that the public already views health care as their responsibility, since they control the White House and both houses of Congress.

On the Senate floor Tuesday, McConnell conceded that the legislation repealing the 2010 law and replacing it with GOP-preferred programs "will not be successful, " essentially waving a white flag.

A leading business coalition has warned that employers could pick up the tab if millions of people lose their coverage under the Republican plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act.

On Wednesday, hundreds of people will travel to Washington, D.C.to occupy the offices of Republican senators in a message to "Kill the bill".



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