Did Lindsey Graham Just Save the Last Chance to Truly Repeal ObamaCare?
With 17 days left to republican to repeal ObamaCare on party lines, 4 GOP Senators have rolled out a plan to derive federal funding into state-by-state grants.
Senator Lindsey Graham described it as the last ditch effort to repeal Obamacare.
If this works, I will take back some of the nasty things I have said about Lindsay Graham. Looks good and the Freedom Caucus seems to be on board. If nothing else, it reverses the road towards single payer and actually destroys ObamaCare.
Graham said that this should have been our first bill, but now it is our last shot at reform on ObamaCare.
The Graham-Cassidy-Heller-Johnson bill, named for co-sponsors Graham, Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Dean Heller (R-Nev.), and Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), would turn the billions of dollars spent on the ACA’s Medicaid expansion, tax credits and subsidies into grants managed by each state.
The bill represents a fundamentally different approach to overturning much of the sprawling 2010 health-care law than other measures Senate Republicans have attempted — and failed to achieve — this year.
It would leave in place most of the financial props that support the ACA, eliminating only a tax on medical devices. At the same time, it does not attempt to replace the current law’s policies with more conservative federal approaches, instead allowing each state to define its own rules for health plans that may be sold to residents and the help consumers should receive to afford that insurance.
While maintaining the ACA’s taxes, the proposal would repeal many of the law’s features disliked by Republicans, including the requirements that most Americans carry insurance and that large employers offer health coverage.
It would allow states to waive most of the law’s insurance regulation but continue its ban on insurers refusing to cover people with preexisting medical conditions.
The plan would end the premium tax credits that the ACA provides to more than 80 percent of the approximately 10 million Americans who currently have health plans through marketplaces created under the law. And it would eliminate cost-sharing discounts the law provides lower-income consumers with marketplace plans to help them afford deductibles and other other-of-pocket expenses. State could decide whether to create new forms of financial help for buying insurance.
The bill’s main components would start in 2020, and the funding it envisions would last until 2026, limited by the 10-year budget window. The amount of money each state would receive as a block grant would hinge on how many residents fall roughly within the income groups eligible for Medicaid under an expansion of the program that about three-fifths of the states have adopted under the ACA — people with incomes of up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level.
But the block grant could be spent on a variety of health-care purposes, not just to help lower-income people gain coverage. States would decide whether to preserve, or begin, their Medicaid expansion.
What’s uncertain is how the bill could beat the buzzer — the end of the budget reconciliation reconstructions that Republicans hoped they could use to repeal most of the ACA with just 50 votes, plus the tie-breaking support of Vice President Pence.
We need most of the republicans to jump on hard and vote for this new bill and repeal ObamaCare. It will fix the Federally funded government health program.