Senate GOP's Health Care Overhaul Would Bring 'Pain' to Americans: Obama

Posted June 23, 2017

Democrats are united in opposition.

President Obama's health care bill taxed corporations and the wealthiest of Americans to help pay for insurance for lower-income people. That's why they unanimously opposed the Affordable Care Act when it was written seven years ago, and that's why their bill today puts no mandates and no burdens on individuals to buy coverage. He's not going to be the 51st "no" vote on a bill backed by Trump.

However, it's unclear whether the bill will get enough support to pass the Senate. "Look forward to making it really special!" he wrote on Twitter.

GOP Senate leaders were eager for a seal of approval from Trump, who had urged them to produce a bill more "generous" than the House's. So the president's dream of getting an Obamacare repeal-replacement bill passed anytime soon is nearly certainly on hold.

Dozens gathered in front of Northampton's City Hall Thursday to bring awareness to the new Senate healthcare bill.

Obama weighed in on Facebook.

It repeals nearly all Obamacare taxes. Mike Lee, R-Utah; and Ron Johnson, R-Wis., said in a statement Thursday afternoon.

"We have an agreement on the statement, let's see where it goes from there", he said. However, the draft of this bill contains a provision that disqualifies any health plan that provides coverage for abortions from being a qualified health plan. Fewer than one in three Americans supports it, according to Reuters/Ipsos polling. They said GOP characterizations of the law as failing are wrong and said the Republican plan would boot millions off coverage and leave others facing higher out-of-pocket costs. States would also have to retain Obama's requirement that family insurance cover children up to age 26. The bill would also phase out certain health benefits that insurance plans are now required to provide, such as preventive care screenings, emergency room visits, maternal and newborn care and lab tests.

Both versions would repeal the 3.8% net investment income tax on high earners, a key target for Republicans.

Older people could be disproportionately hurt because they pay more for insurance in general. It allows parents keep their kids on their policies until they turn 26, and requires insurers to cover people with preexisting conditions.

Like the House bill, the Senate measure would block federal payments to Planned Parenthood.

However, the Senate bill still includes language that would harm sexual assault survivors. "So it's selective to take the most vulnerable and starve them of the cost of healthcare", said Kevin Grumbach, M.D. a family medicine physician.

The bill's real-world impact is not yet known, but the CBO is expected to provide an estimate early next week.

Still, it's a warning shot of sorts: Senate Republican leaders are apparently going to have to move the bill to even further to the right, at least some tangible ways, to pick up these four far-right members. Protesters were physically removed by Capitol Police officers.