On Monday night, House Republicans rolled out their bill to replace and repeal Obamacare. Removing the Affordable Care Act has been one of Donald Trump’s main priorities, and Republicans have struggled to find a suitable replacement. In the newly drafted bill, they repeal the mandate that all citizens are required to have health insurance, allow young adults to stay on their parents’ plans until they turn 26, and set up a complicated web of tax credits.
According to the proposed plan, the new system would revolve around tax credits assisting people who were purchasing insurance.
“That tax credit would range from $2,000 to $4,000 a year, increasing with someone’s age. That system would provide less financial assistance for low-income and older people than ObamaCare, but it could give more assistance to younger people and those with higher incomes”. (via)
While citizens in states that expanded Medicaid could still qualify for the service until 2020, this new plan would work on phasing it out in the coming years. While the penalty currently in place for those who do not purchase insurance will be retroactively removed to the beginning of 2016, anyone who seeks to reenroll after a gap will face a 30% surcharge on their premium for an entire year. Americans will not be denied coverage for a pre-existing condition, but there are still no definite numbers about what these new plans will actually cost. With all of the cuts being made, one can only assume that they will be sizable. Additionally, women will not be able to purchase plans that include abortion services, while also including provisions to strip Planned Parenthood of their federal funding.
At this point, it is unlikely that this bill will pass the Senate. Many have already come out against the bill, including Democratic Representatives Richard Neal of Massachusetts and Frank Pallone of New Jersey, who released this joint statement.
Senators Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Shelley Moore Capito (R. W.Va.), Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), also claimed in a statement addressed to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell that “We will not support a plan that does not include stability for Medicaid expansion populations or flexibility for states.” While the Republicans may think that they have found a replacement, it seems unlikely that they will be able to drum up the votes required for it to pass.