G.O.P. Pulls American Health Care Act
Before the American Health Care Act could be voted on Friday afternoon, Republican leaders in the house and President Donald Trump pulled the American Health Care Act, the bill that would repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, from the floor before a vote, effectively ending the bill. This comes after Republicans, both conservative and moderate, failed to get behind the bill leaving them short of the votes that would have been needed to pass the legislation.
Republicans in both houses of Congress have been railing against the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare since the bill became law just over seven years ago.
“You can’t pretend and say this is a win for us,” said Representative Mark Walker (R-NC) told the New York Times. “Probably that champagne that wasn’t popped back in November may be utilized this evening.”
The bill was unable to get conservatives on board because it kept some parts of the ACA, like the essential health benefits, in place. Moderates were not encouraged by the Congressional Budget Office report that 24 million people would lose their coverage as a result of the bill.
Neither of these helped the bill’s chances, and a consent to one side may have caused a lost vote on the other.
Further damaging the bill’s chance of passing was when Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ) who serves chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, and Rep Barbara Comstock (R-VA) both came out against this bill early Friday morning.
“Seven years after enactment of Obamacare, I wanted to support legislation that made positive changes to rescue health care in America,” Frelinghuysen said in a statement. “Unfortunately, the legislation before the House today is currently unacceptable as it would place significant new costs and barriers to care on my constituents in New Jersey.”
Hopefully, this will serve to bring Democrats and Republicans together to create improvements for the ACA and put an end to the seemingly single-minded approach to defending or destroying the bill both sides are guilty of. By working together and compromising, we can make a healthcare bill that helps all Americans.