House Republicans release long-awaited plan to replace Obamacare
House Republicans on March 6 released legislation that would substantially alter the Affordable Care Act. Here’s what you need to know about the plan. (Bastien Inzaurralde, Victoria Walker, Sarah Parnass/The Washington Post)
House Republicans on Monday released long-anticipated legislation to supplant the Affordable Care Act with a more conservative vision for the nation’s health-care system, replacing federal insurance subsidies with a new form of individual tax credits and grants to help states shape their own policies.
Under two bills drafted by separate House committees, the government would no longer penalize Americans for failing to have health insurance but would try to encourage people to maintain coverage by allowing insurers to impose a surcharge of 30 percent for those who have a gap between health plans.
The legislation would preserve two of the most popular features of the 2010 health-care law, letting young adults stay on their parents’ health plans until age 26 and forbidding insurers to deny coverage or charge more to people with preexisting medical problems. It would also target Planned Parenthood, rendering the women’s health organization ineligible for Medicaid reimbursements or federal family planning grants — a key priority for antiabortion groups.
The debate, starting in House committees this week, is a remarkable moment in government health-care policymaking. The Affordable Care Act, former president Barack Obama’s signature domestic policy achievement passed in 2010 with only Democratic support, ushered in the most significant expansion of insurance coverage since the creation of Medicare and Medicaid as part of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s Great Society programs of the mid-1960s.
There is no precedent for Congress to reverse a major program of social benefits once it has taken effect and reached millions of Americans.
President Trump, Vice President Pence and House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) keep saying a plan to repeal and replace Obamacare will be released soon, but few details have been released so far. Here's what they've said. (Video: Sarah Parnass/Photo: Jonathan Newton/The Washington Post)
Taken together, the bills introduced Monday night represent the Republicans’ first attempt — and best shot to date, with an ally in the White House — to translate seven years of talking points about demolishing the ACA into action.