GOP Senators Throw another Health Care Hail Mary

15 September, 2017, 00:38 | Author: Ora Austin
  • GOP Senators Throw another Health Care Hail Mary

"We worked so hard to get the health care that we do have". Moreover, one of the GOP senators who wound up supporting skinny repeal, Rand Paul, has announced opposition to Graham-Cassidy.

Given the dramatic late-night vote back in July that saw Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's skinny repeal narrowly defeated, the odds of completely rewriting government healthcare in just over two weeks is unlikely, even with a 51-vote majority. "Every time that I think I can finally sleep at night, they come out with another awful bill - because my Affordable Care Act policy is what's keeping me alive".

"I think it's probably the most coherent of the proposals Republicans have looked at this year", Levin told THE WEEKLY STANDARD in an email.

For one thing, the bill, H.R. 1628, would rely on block grants.

Greenspan, who held office from 1987 until 2006, said in a statement that a measure proposed by four Senate Republicans on Wednesday represents a "giant step forward" because it provides grants to states to provide health coverage.

The Graham-Cassidy bill would also repeal the individual and employer mandates. So far there seems to be broad support across party lines for funding cost-sharing reduction payments that the president has threatened to end while making it easier for states to tweak their health care programs. The bill would block federal funding to Planned Parenthood, which is reimbursed by Medicaid for non-abortion services. It is likely that they would also protest this bill.

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Graham, Cassidy, Heller and Sen.

The goal, according to Cassidy, is to "equalize" federal spending per patient between states that receive extra Medicaid dollars through Obamacare and those that do not.

The timing is of the announcement is particularly notable.

. Dean Heller and Wisconsin Sen.

Separately, independent Senator Bernie Sanders, a 2016 Democratic presidential candidate, was pushing a plan to widen the Medicare health insurance program for seniors, to include everyone. Bernie Sanders unveiled an alternative plan - for a single-payer system that would cover everyone and cut out insurance companies. 12 other senators have signed onto Sanders' bill. Tim Scott, a Republican from SC who added that the bill was the last "bullet left in the chamber". It gives patients a voice in health care [that] they'll never have through a single-payer health care system.

While Republicans mull over these proposals, almost a dozen Senate Democrats are rallying behind legislation that aims to expand Medicare and create a single-payer health care system in America.

Continued cost-sharing reduction payments are not addressed in the bill because CSRs can not be approved through budget reconciliation. CBO predicts that eliminating cost-sharing would increase the federal deficit by $194 billion by 2026.

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