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Senate Republicans Stepping Up Efforts to Repeal and Replace ObamaCare
19 September 2017, 12:58 | Colleen Roy
Democrats and Republicans race to meet legislative health care deadline
As you may recall, on July 28, John McCain cast his dramatic "no" vote killing the Health Care Freedom Act, misleadingly nicknamed the "skinny repeal". Will the GOP blow it again?
Momentum is building for a health care overhaul led by Republicans Lindsey Graham and Bill Cassidy, their repeal and replace legislation scraps health care law mandates and provides states with block grants for health care costs. States could use the block grants to contract with insurers to encourage their participation in the exchanges, subsidize premiums and out-of-pocket costs for individuals, pay physicians and hospitals, support their Medicaid programs, and create high-risk and reinsurance pools. Nor can he get the enthusastic backing of his fellow senator Tim Scott, also a Republican, who so far has said only he likes the framework of the legislation.
About $500 billion would be stripped from the ACA and the Medicaid program. The plan would ultimately block grant health care to the states and governors would design health care systems within their own states.
The Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs announced it will hold a hearing on block grants September 26 as top GOP lawmakers in the upper chamber attempt to revive their efforts to repeal and replace Obamacare. Check out IBD University. "The grant dollars would replace the federal money now being spent on Medicaid expansion, Obamacare tax credits, cost-sharing reduction subsidies and the basic health plan dollars".
More than a dozen states, including SC, that chose not to expand Medicaid eligibility under Obamacare stand to benefit from more federal money under the Graham-Cassidy proposal. It lets states run their insurance markets as they see fit.
On Monday, Ducey tweeted his support for the measure, calling it "the best path forward to repeal and replace Obamacare".
Co-sponsoring the proposal with Graham and Cassidy are Chairman Ron Johnson, R-Wisc., and Dean Heller, R-Nev.
"In general, over time, the plan would punish states that have adopted the Medicaid expansion or been more successful at enrolling low- and moderate-income people in marketplace coverage under the [Affordable Care Act]". And it leaves many other free-market reforms off the table.
"There is tremendous flexibility for states under Cassidy-Graham, but also tremendous responsibility".
"This week we need to be focused on defeating the Graham-Cassidy bill". After that date, health-care legislation will require 60 votes to pass, making it much harder for Republicans to approve legislation that would restructure Obamacare.
Murray spokeswoman Helen Hare said Murray is "hopeful and optimistic" a deal could be announced soon - a statement that came as Democrats tried peeling away GOP support from the Graham-Cassidy bill.
"This does not look, smell or even sound like repeal", Paul said. That means Alaskan Sen. Susan Collins of ME and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, who stood up against July's repeal effort.
On "This Week" George Stephanopoulous asked Jonathan Karl, "We all assumed repeal and replace was dead". Bernie Sanders (I-VT) last week, which would, over the course of four years, expand Medicaid eligibility to all residents. But those votes, which took place while President Obama was sure to veto any repeal measure, were meaningless.
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