Gillibrand urges Senate GOP to reject 'cruel' health care plan

Posted May 16, 2017

While President Trump and House Republicans celebrated passage of their measure Thursday with a White House Rose Garden event, concerns were already mounting about dying momentum as the more deliberate Senate tries to craft its own ObamaCare replacement plan. Budget analysts estimate 24 million Americans would lose insurance over a decade, 14 million in the first year, and older Americans would face higher costs.

It took a monumental effort by Republicans to sell one another on the health-care bill that narrowly passed the House on Thursday.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has named 12 GOP senators to a group tasked with piecing together a bill that can pass the Senate.

What are the risks for the Republicans who chose to get this through the House?

The Republican plan would replace government subsidies to buy health insurance with tax credits. The bill has to get through the Senate before it can go to the president, and it has to be scored by the Congressional Budget Office before it can get through the Senate.

"We always hear about job growth and business creation - being able to have affordable health care drives that", Williams said.

"Many people with pre-existing conditions will have a hard time maintaining coverage because it just won't be affordable", said Larry Levitt, a health insurance expert with the Kaiser Family Foundation, which studies health care issues.

The potential fallout crystallized nearly immediately. Democrats warned Republicans that they would pay the price in future elections if they followed through with plans to dramatically alter healthcare law.

Rep. David Brat, a member of the conservative House Freedom Caucus who refrained from supporting the AHCA until amendments were added, told USA Today's Eliza Collins he wants to see the AHCA as it stands now to get to Trump's desk.

Trumpcare opponents have criticised House leadership for not allowing the CBO to finish analysing how much the AHCA would cost, or how many it would affect, before holding a vote - a sign that the leaders were trying to rush the bill through the lower chamber, they said.

"What the Medicaid reforms really do is put pressure on the states to get costs under control", MacArthur said.

Cutting almost $1 trillion from Medicaid will give states the freedom to tailor the program to suit their needs, Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price said Sunday, as he defended a narrowly passed House bill that aims to undo parts of the health care law enacted by the previous administration.

Republican Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, who is not seeking re-election next year, warned the bill "has the potential to severely harm the health and lives of people in south Florida". So, by the time the mid-terms happened in 2010, the unpopularity of that bill, which was not mitigated by any benefits by then, produced a 62-seat loss in the House for the Democrats. We might talk about how every major stakeholder group - the American Medical Association, the American Hospital Association, the AARP, the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, the American Heart Association, and on and on - all oppose the bill.

"We're giving states the ability to run their own Medicaid program", Ryan said, arguing that block-granting Medicaid was "hardly draconian". The current version of the AHCA falls about $200 billion short of that, and the $8 billion promised to Republican moderates in the House would fill in just 4 percent of the funding gap.

Democrats also targeted Republican governors in Democratic-leaning states, including Maryland's Larry Hogan, who did not take a public position before the House vote. "It's the sort of things that cowards do, and the Republicans in Congress and in the statehouses are cowards".