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Unhealthy outlook for repealing ObamaCare as some GOP senators defect from bill

24 Juin 2017

Major health-care industry groups largely fell into two camps Thursday when Republicans released their Affordable Care Act repeal: those that criticized the bill and those that preferred to say nothing at all.

The 142-page bill would create a new system of federal tax credits to help people buy health insurance, while offering states the ability to drop numerous benefits required by the Affordable Care Act, like maternity care, emergency services and mental health treatment.

Who are the 13.5 million Californians that potentially face Medi-Cal cuts under the Senate bill? If Cassidy is betting his constituents' hatred of Obamacare is so intense they will abide a bill that cripples their health insurance coverage, the evidence suggests he is wrong. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., has said he's willing to alter the measure to attract support, and next week promises plenty of back-room bargaining as he tries pushing a final package through his chamber. "Remember, ObamaCare is dead".

"Moving from an opposition party to a governing party comes with growing pains", Ryan said at the time.

"I think right now the challenge is how do we get to 50".

Democrats said the GOP measure would take coverage away from people and raise their out-of-pocket costs, all in the name of paring taxes on the wealthy.

On top of rolling back low-income Californians' access to health insurance, the Senate bill would also enable a huge transfer of public resources from the poor to the rich.

President Donald Trump and his White House team are taking a hands-off approach to the health care bill under consideration by the Senate.

Sens. Paul Ryan of Kentucky, Ted Cruz of Texas, Mike Lee of Utah and Ron Johnson of Wisconsin all said they would not support the current bill after its long-awaited reveal.

They also would repeal a penalty imposed on large employers that do not provide insurance to their workers, and remove the fine that Obamacare imposes on those who choose to go uninsured.

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Trump shares that view, and passage of the Senate bill would move the president much closer to being able to boast about the adoption of a marquee piece of legislation, a feat he has so far been unable to accomplish.

There are a few distinctions, though I wouldn't call them real differences.

The Senate bill also slows the introduction of these Medicaid cuts, pushing the deepest wounds to the elderly into the future. And Susan Collins of ME reiterated her opposition to language blocking federal money for Planned Parenthood, which many Republicans oppose because it provides abortions.

Obama finally weighed in on the GOP healthcare bill Thursday, in a long Facebook post. "If there's a chance you might get sick, get old, or start a family - this Bill will do you harm", he wrote.

And former President Barack Obama, who has been hesitant to speak up on political issues since leaving office, waded into the debate Thursday, saying the Senate proposal showed a "fundamental meanness".

The House approved its version of the bill last month.

A Congressional Budget Office examination of the House bill estimated that it would cost as many as 23 million Americans their health insurance in the coming years.

The new legislation would eliminate federal funding for Planned Parenthood, a non-profit health organisation that Trump's administration has targeted for cuts because it provides abortion services. He will hold a rally against the bill Friday at 10.am. inside the state capital.

"It is essential that no one lose their health care coverage and that health care providers receive adequate reimbursement for the care we provide", the statement read. However, an initial analysis finds the new version offers a bit more financial assistance to low income people than the previous version.

Caroline Pearson, a senior vice president of the consulting firm Avalare Health, said the Senate subsidies would be smaller than Obama's because they're keyed to the cost of a bare-bones plan and because additional help now provided for deductibles and copayments would eventually be discontinued.

Unhealthy outlook for repealing ObamaCare as some GOP senators defect from bill