Vt. leaders slam GOP health bill

Saturday, 24 Jun, 2017

The legislation, billed as a replacement for the Affordable Care Act signed into law by former President Barack Obama, was released by Senate Republicans after weeks of secretive work. Thousands upon thousands of Americans, including Republicans, threw themselves into that collective effort, not for political reasons, but for intensely personal ones - a sick child, a parent lost to cancer, the memory of medical bills that threatened to derail their dreams.

It's about 150 pages long, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has said it will be voted on next Thursday before the governing body takes its July 4 break.

Obama also said Obamacare has helped cover 90 per cent Americans. According to Comey's testimony before Congress earlier this month, it was this tweet which prompted the former Federal Bureau of Investigation director to provide his notes of his meeting with Trump to a friend, who then relayed them to the Times.

Collins is no fan of the status quo, and she and others have identified real problems with Obamacare that should be addressed.

It proposes defunding Planned Parenthood for a year, but abortion-related restrictions are less stringent than the House version because of uncertainty over whether they would comply with Senate rules. "Not only will the bill ration health care for millions of Americans, it is a massive giveaway to the wealthy at the expense of our kids".

While presenting arguments in favour of Obamacare, Obama writes in his Facebook post that the legislation has helped cover 90 per cent Americans and the insurance companies now can not ask for more or deny insurance citing pre-existing health conditions.

Those with pre-existing conditions will be able to keep their coverage without a price hike directly tied to the condition.

But it then allows states to opt out of that requirement.

Sandoval said he would do "everything in my power" to make sure those people can maintain the quality of life they now have. That's two-thirds of the entire GOP Senate caucus. As the nation's medical schools and teaching hospitals see every day, people without sufficient coverage often delay getting the care they need.

But Medicaid has been eating up an ever-larger share of federal spending.

President Obama posted a 900-word statement on Facebook yesterday, decrying the Senate bill as a gift to the rich at the expense of the poor. They also want to start to change the way the federal government calculates payments to the states starting in 2025, which will reduce the federal government's contribution to the states.

Like the House bill, they said, the Senate bill would no longer penalize individuals and employers for failing to have health insurance. Senator Risch says it is premature to comment on the bill as he needs time to look it over.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

I recognize that repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act has become a core tenet of the Republican Party. NPR's Alison Kodjak begins our coverage.

It's unclear exactly what role President Trump - who tweeted last night that he supports the bill - will play in trying to unite Republicans before their recess.

Senate Republicans released only a draft of their bill, with no analysis and no cost estimates. Given that the Senate bill is not vastly different in many respects, we expect the CBO will conclude that significant negative consequences will arise from the Senate version as well.

The measure largely uses people's incomes as the yardstick for helping those without workplace coverage to buy private insurance. Avik Roy is a physician and founder of the conservative Foundation for Research on Equal Opportunity.