This was originally published on Liberal America on March 7, 2017.
The Republican Party has tried to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA), President Barack Obama’s healthcare bill. Last night, the GOP-run Congress introduced their plan to “replace” the ACA, the American Health Care Act (AHCA). It is just as horrible as we thought it would be.
Under this act, Planned Parenthood would be defunded. The States can no longer expand Medicaid. The subsidies will be based on age instead of income, which is hugely discriminatory. They are also expanding Health Savings Accounts, which only work if you have extra money.
There are four Republican Senators who are heroically rebelling against this plan. Republican Sens. Rob Portman (Ohio), Shelley Moore Capito (W. Vir), Cory Gardner (Col.), and Lisa Murkowski (Alaska) sent a letter to the Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell. It read in part:
“While we support efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act and make structural reforms to the Medicaid program. We are concerned that the February 10th draft proposal from the House of Representatives does not provide stability and certainty for individuals and families in Medicaid expansion programs or the necessary flexibility for states.”
Since there are 52 Republican Senators, the party likely won’t be able to pass the bill without these four.
The proposed bill does keep protections for people with pre-existing conditions. However, people with conditions can be charged higher premiums if they let coverage lapse.
The spineless Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) said this about the bill:
“The American Health Care Act is a plan to drive down costs, encourage competition, and give every American access to quality, affordable health insurance. It protects young adults, patients with pre-existing conditions, and provides a stable transition so that no one has the rug pulled out from under them.”
Let’s hope that this BS doesn’t get passed, and they can actually come up with something that could help people.