by Countable | 4.27.17
Just weeks ago President Donald Trump and Republican leaders suffered the embarrassment of having to pull their bill to repeal and replace Obamacare from the House floor because they lacked the votes to pass it. Now, after a couple of tweaks, the bill has won over the support of the conservative House Freedom Caucus -- and that means GOP leaders will likely take it up once again.
The new version sets up a waiver system, which would allow state governments to side-step key insurance regulations established under Obamacare. Those include:
The requirement that every insurance plan cover, at the very least, a set of basic "essential health benefits," like maternity care, some prescription drugs, and hospital stays. Under the new bill, states with waivers could create their own standards, or allow the free market to dictate benefits.
The rule that insurance companies must charge the same price to customers of the same age in the same area, regardless of their current health and medical history. In states with waivers, insurers could once again hike prices on people who are in poorer health, or who have pre-existing conditions.
The regulation that establishes how much more in premiums insurance companies may charge older people. The GOP health care bill would allow insurers to charge older customers up to five-times the price of a young person’s premiums.
The public infighting among Republicans and now the changes to their health care bill show just how much power the conservative wing of the party has on Capitol Hill and with the Trump White House.
"Unequivocally so," Rep. Mark Sanford (R-SC) told Countable. “From a conservative’s vantage point there are a number of different things that have been added, and I think we got to the high water mark on what could or couldn’t be added and people were ready to strike a deal and move on.”
It’s still unclear if Republicans have the votes to pass the bill though, because many moderate Republicans who come from competitive districts remain opposed to it. "I am opposed to the bill and I think the Democrats should come to the table on the issue of the exchanges, which I think is an area that needs reform immediately," Rep. Leonard Lance (R-NJ) told Countable. “I want to vote for a proposal that lowers premiums for the American people and I don’t think this bill does that.”
Other lawmakers are still on the fence over the new proposal and would rather Republicans introduce an outright repeal of the Affordable Care Act. "I’m trying to make sure we’re not making this more complicated than we should," Republican Rep. Paul Gosar told Rolling Stone. “Wouldn’t it be nice to repeal the thing? And start simple? We talk about market-based applications and that’s hardly what we’re trying to do with the AHA.”
The White House has been lobbying Republican leaders to hold the vote this week before Trump hits his 100 day mark on Saturday. While that’s still a possibility, GOP leaders are hesitant to bring it up without first securing the support of at least 216 of their members. "We’re going to go when we have the votes," Speaker Paul Ryan told reporters at the Capitol on Thursday. “This has been a very organic bottom up process and that takes time.”
Tell your lawmakers what you think of the new ideas in the Republicans’ health care bill.
-- By Matt Laslo
(Photo Credit: Thirteen Of Clubs via Flickr / Creative Commons)
Written by Countable
Do not vote to pass a new health care bill. There is no reason to rush a piece of legislation through to meet some arbitrary deadline. This bill does not benefit the people. It leaves them vulnerable to higher premiums, limited coverage, and potentially losing coverage all together. You claim to have run for office to represent your constituents and vote in their best interest. This bill will hurt your constituents. This bill could mean life or death for some. Consider the ramifications of your choices and cast your vote to protect us. Vote against this bill.
The GOP, the Freedom Caucus and Trump are all out of touch with real Americans and our need for affordable health care. Do everything you can to halt the GOP health care plan.
So healthcare is something that you want for yourself, your families and the employees you have but you have no qualms about taking it away from the people you serve? You should be ashamed of yourselves.
Vote against the new version of repeal/replace ACA. High risk pools are Not the answer and allowing insurance companies to sell essentially "empty" policies is pointless.
Please vote against the new version of the AHCA. It is worse than the first version and will make healthcare more expensive for those who need it the most - the sickest among us. The opt out provisions are a terrible idea and will become the norm for insurance carriers only interested in higher profits. Please do not support this bill.
No difference from first version except a poor attempt to get votes by negotiating with hardliners. We don't want this. It's bad for Americans. What is wrong with the GOP?
TrumpCare 2.0 is worse then that hideous plan proposal originally rolled out. You didn't vote for the first one and you certainly should not vote for this one. This is too important to race out and approve just so trump can tweet about it before his 100 days are up. Nevadans are so particularly at risk. Please vote no on this new proposal and take the time to improve the ACA. Don't repeal and gut it.
Vote NO on changes to the healthcare bill. Waivers allow reimplementation of the negative practices which made universal healthcare necessary in the first place. Want to take on healthcare? Start with Big Pharma! Pharmaceutical costs are outrageous and unfair. Start allowing Canadian meds across the border. Put a cap on costs. Do something about greedy pharmaceutical companies BEFORE you even think about TAKING AWAY healthcare from people. Healthcare is unaffordable without insurance. People NEED healthcare, and the only way they can get it is with insurance. My friend died on Sunday. He had lost his job and his health insurance. When he finally went to the emergency room, he was in multi-organ failure. They never found the cause nor could they find a solution. He was 44 years-old. He would not go to the ER earlier due to not having insurance. In this country insurance is linked to a job, and in our society people change jobs often. That should not mean people have to die because they lost health insurance after losing or changing jobs.
This new version continues to harm the most vulnerable. Insurance is for the unexpected. With co-pays and high deductibles those that are "healthy" are not paying those costs but your health could change at any moment and you could be screwed if you have a lower cost policy. Vote no!!!!
This bill is only being rushed through to give Trump some accomplishment. It is a terrible plan that will hurt millions of Americans. People with preexisting conditions and the elderly will pay with their life.
Don't approve this! It allows insurance companies to hurt women, the elderly and those with preexisting conditions. This is completely unethical
No. No, no, no to Trumpcare changes please. Trumpcare seems to be all about taking away healthcare. The people don't want this - please start listening to them.
Why would congress exempt itself from the new medical bill if it's somehow better? Better for who- the insurance companies that fund elections?
The latest version of Trumpcare with the amendments by Rep Tom MacArthur are simply another attempt to allow insurance companies more power to dictate terms of what they will pay for or maybe not at all. It's worded to confuse the issue around pre-existing conditions by hiding the 'opt-out' for states in community rating, that allows a de facto opt-out by states so insurers can charge anything they want. It does nothing to increase the amount of plans, or mandate that those plans that might arise have Essential Benefits. It will be like buying car insurance that only covers you if you hit a specific tree in the road. My family benefited from the protections of the ACA even though we are insured through my work. If Trumpcare goes through, there's no guarantee that costs won't rise on those plans either. Certainly those people tossed - yes, tossed callously into high risk pools will pay more. No to Trumpcare.
United States' healthcare ranking is number 37 according to the World Health Organization. But wait! Our legislators don't actually care about the health of American citizens, do they? Let's just fill up the coffers of the insurance companies and folks with pre-existing conditions or poverty be damned, right? Weee!
The message from the constituents has not changed! Fix what is already in place and which took so long to bring about instead of trying to ramrod some ill-conceived half-baked "plan." Do remember what your constituents had to say during your last townhall meetings which were quite unequivocal.
Shame on you who voted for republicans and trump they care nothing about you . Vote them out whenever they run .
This new bill is an outrage! If health insurance is a necessity, it should provide "beneficial coverage". Pre-existing conditions should never determine someone's coverage! Representatives, if this is a bill you would not want to apply to your life or to a loved one, then it should be completely off the table!
This revision is also lousy. Millions will lose health care which taxpayers pay for in non reimbursed Emergency Room expenses. Get real, don't get political.
The revised health care bill is an affront to the American people. The fact that it ever came to be and is even being allowed a vote is an insult and shows the lack of integrity some of our officials suffer. We will not tolerate an attack on our basic rights as citizens. We want the ACA strengthened and single payer system for all. Vote no on this harmful bill.