Barack Obama vetoed an Obamacare repeal bill when it landed on his desk — as expected.
Obamacare opponents are wondering why Congress hasn’t sent President Donald Trump the same or a similar bill, a measure he’d likely sign.
Politico reported that it obtained a copy of a proposed repeal bill that would do away with subsidies and Medicaid expansion. An excerpt:
The legislation would take down the foundation of Obamacare, including the unpopular individual mandate, subsidies based on people’s income, and all of the law’s taxes. It would significantly roll back Medicaid spending and give states money to create high risk pools for some people with pre-existing conditions. Some elements would be effective right away; others not until 2020.
“Unpopular” is an understatement. One of the biggest issues with Obamacare was that it forced individuals to buy a product, or their government would penalize them.
Comparing health insurance to car insurance, for instance, if people choose not to drive a car, they don’t have to buy car insurance. Under Obamacare, individuals don’t have much of a choice with health insurance. They’d face onerous fines (which the Supreme Court deemed constitutional as a “tax”) if they opt not to pay for a product they don’t want or decided they don’t need.
The proposed repeal bill would be funded by limiting the tax breaks on employers’ health insurance plans.
Speaker Paul Ryan said last week that Republicans would introduce repeal legislation after recess. But the GOP has been deeply divided about how much of the law to scrap, and how much to “repair,” and the heated town halls back home during the weeklong recess aren’t making it any easier for them.
The key House committees declined to comment on specifics of a draft that will change as the bill moves through the committees. The speaker’s office deferred to the House committees.
Some Americans don’t want an Obamacare replacement, but it appears the GOP has proposed one. The measure would replace subsidies with tax credits based on age.
For a person under age 30, the credit would be $2,000. That amount would double for beneficiaries over the age of 60, according to the proposal. A related document notes that HHS Secretary Tom Price wants the subsidies to be slightly less generous for most age groups.
The proposed bill would also provide a disincentive for states to expand Medicaid. They would receive fewer federal dollars for coverage.
According to Politico, the leaked bill contains penalties for people who don’t keep coverage.
Like the unpopular individual mandate, that penalty is designed to discourage individuals from waiting until they get sick to get coverage.
Similar to Obamacare and what opponents don’t like about it.
What do you think?
What if people want to self-pay and opt to go without coverage? Why can’t the GOP repeal Obamacare and not replace it?
Also see Ken Blackwell’s Let the Market Fix Health Care.