Trump goes all in for the GOP's Obamacare replacement

Although the House bill has cleared three committees, some lawmakers can visualize scenarios where things come apart.

Trump pointed to rising premiums on Obamacare plans this year, as much as 100 percent or more in Arizona, as evidence that the health-care law is a failure and needs immediate replacement.

Many conservatives have complained that the original House replacement, called the American Health Care Act, is too similar to the health care law crafted in 2009-10 by then President Barack Obama and a Democratic Congress.

Senators found an array of faults with the legislation, raising a challenge for GOP leaders trying to craft a cohesive message. He said that many of these people would be transitioned into new private and employer-sponsored plans that would become more affordable under the Republican plan. It probably won't result in a dramatic increase in the number of insurance companies participating.

The first part, the so-called budget "reconciliation" bill, is already drawing fire within the GOP, not to mention among Democrats.

Thursday will mark the seventh anniversary of when Obama signed his health overhaul into law, one of his milestone domestic achievements enacted over unanimous GOP opposition. She joins Kentucky's Rand Paul and Utah's Mike Lee in opposing the legislation, while other Republicans, including Tom Cotton of Arkansas and Ted Cruz of Texas, have expressed deep misgivings.

Some moderate Republicans are nervous that the plan would cause struggling families to suffer, a prospect highlighted this week by a damning congressional projection that 24 million people could lose insurance within a decade under the new bill. Block granting would allow states to place new restrictions on who can get Medicaid. The condition would apply to healthy people with no dependents, a White House official said.

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The main action is with Medicaid, the joint federal-state insurance program for the poor. The program now costs the federal government around $370 billion annually and covers costs no matter the amounts.

In another warning signal, four GOP governors wrote congressional leaders Thursday saying the bill's approach to Medicaid would not work for states. Thirty-one states and the District of Columbia did so.

Trump said at the Friday meeting that the White House has agreed to change certain aspects of the bill. "But they also show that President Trump is all-in now" to help win converts. This bill has been criticized for providing tax cuts to the rich and because it would leave millions once more without insurance, detractors say.

He said his group has spoken with Senate Republicans about potential changes and will propose an amendment on Monday. On top of this, the CBO found at least 14 million would be uninsured as soon as next year if the GOP bill passed. Centrists remained wary of yanking constituents from coverage. These aspects of well-being are linked inextricably; neither is any less important or any more "real" than the other.

Moderates "don't like the idea of taking a vote in the House that may go nowhere in the Senate", said congressman Charlie Dent of Pennsylvania. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and hardline conservative Sen.

Republicans have a 52-48 Senate majority.

  • Marjorie Miles