Trump made many promises over the course of his campaign, yet one of the ones he consistently spoke about was to repeal ObamaCare and replace it with something new. While House Republicans are in the process of creating a replacement bill, it’s already being met with opposition from conservatives who are concerned that it represents too much government. The legislation, released Monday night, is currently in the process of being refined by a pair of committees.
In an official statement, Paul Ryan hailed the American Health Care Act as a plan to “drive down costs, encourage competition” and offer affordable health insurance to the average American. While Ryan painted a positive picture of a “stable transition” that protects those who rely on healthcare, powerful conservatives will most likely want to change it. For example, Rand Paul thought that the proposal’s call to continue Medicaid expansion over the next four years was “untenable”. Although the House GOP bill would take out the individual mandate to buy insurance, Paul said it would instead let insurers add a 30 percent premium surcharge if somebody’s insurances ends up lapsing. He called dismissed the bill as “ObamaCare Lite”, calling it “unconstitutional” and expressing doubt that conservatives would accept it.
While Rand Paul had little good to say about it, Republicans behind this legislation objected to the name “ObamaCare Lite”, and Trump described it as “wonderful” in a recent tweet. The proposal includes sweeping changes, such as getting rid of the original legislation’s various penalties and mandates, although its subsidies would be replaced by a different kind of monthly tax credit. Certain protections would stay in place for patients, although the bill would call for an eventual transition away from current Medicaid expansion.
This legislation represents a balancing act as Trump tries to deliver on campaign promises while also appealing to those who are more moderate. Several more moderate Republican senators have expressed concern about the impact for families on Medicaid. Most Republicans are looking at the bill’s price tag, which remains unknown. And of course, this is just the beginning; Trump has expressed his plans to tackle health care in three phases.
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