CBO scores leaves some Republicans skittish about ACA replacement

Dive Brief:

  • Republicans opposed to the ACA replacement bill found more reason for frustration with the release of the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) report on the legislation earlier this week, which found that it would lead to 24 million more uninsured over 10 years than the Affordable Care Act.
  • Some in the GOP called for President Donald Trump to scrap the American Health Care Act (AHCA) entirely in wake of the mostly negative report, calling it “a trap.” The CBO found that some of the most negative effects of the AHCA would be for Trump voters.
  • Others, however, pushed for House Speaker Paul Ryan to continue with the bill and “let the legislative process work."

Dive Insight:

Republicans mostly fell into two camps after the damning CBO report. One group pointed to positive aspects of the report, such as declining premiums in the long term, and said other parts were flawed. Others in the GOP, however, said the report was another sign that the bill wouldn’t work as an ACA replacement.

This leaves the AHCA’s future very much up in the air. The House Budget Committee is set to take up the bill Thursday, but that committee includes a few members of the Freedom Caucus who have opposed the AHCA. Republicans can only lose three votes and still expect the bill to get out of committee.

More moderate Republicans are worried about the political implications of an extra 14 million people without coverage in 2018 under the AHCA.

Vice President Mike Pence is scheduled to meet Wednesday with the Republican Study Committee and the GOP Conference to discuss ACA replacement. Press Secretary Sean Spicer said Trump met Tuesday with key Republicans and Anthem CEO Joseph Swedish, who praised the AHCA.

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Filed Under: Health Law Policy & Regulation
Top image credit: Flickr; Lauren