ibusinesslines.com September 23, 2017

A key Republican senator has 'serious concerns' about the Senate's healthcare bill

26 June 2017, 10:32 | Laverne Osborne

A key Republican senator has 'serious concerns' about the Senate's healthcare bill

A key Republican senator has 'serious concerns' about the Senate's healthcare bill

The Senate bill released Thursday would reduce the income thresholds that determine eligibility, change the amount people who receive help pay toward their insurance premiums and peg subsidies to less generous coverage. They're trying to cut nursing home care.

Five Republican senators have announced they will not support the bill, which is created to repeal and replace Obamacare, in its current form.

The Trump administration is reminding the Republicans that the Senate bill fulfills several 2016 campaign promises.

Imagine you are negotiating with two creditors who say you owe them $1,000 and you insist you owe nothing.

Shortly after the 142-page bill was distributed, more than a half-dozen GOP lawmakers signaled concerns or initial opposition.

But White House press secretary Sean Spicer on Friday said President Trump is "committed to making sure that no one who now is in the Medicaid program is affected in any way, which is reflected in the Senate bill, and he's pleased with that". It would also slap annual spending caps on the overall Medicaid program, which since its inception in 1965 has provided states with unlimited money to cover eligible costs. The bill would also bar using tax credits to buy coverage that includes abortions.

Lie One: Democrats and progressives are unwilling to work with Republicans and conservatives on this issue. She cited in part provisions that she believes could cut Medicaid more than the House version.

About 85 percent of the almost 10 million consumers who enrolled in coverage past year through federal and state marketplaces received tax credit subsidies and other types of financial assistance.

"It's going to be very hard to get me to a yes", he said, noting that conservative Republican senators would likely be reluctant to add spending back to the measure. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., one of the five senators opposing the bill.

Lie Three: The Senate bill is a "compromise". Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, who has not suggested she opposes the measure, declined to comment on its components when asked at a news conference Friday.

Collins, who also opposes proposed cuts to Planned Parenthood, said she would await an analysis Monday from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office before taking a final position on the bill.

In June, 51 percent of people viewed the law favorably, compared to 43 percent in November 2016, according to a monthly poll conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation. Iowa opted to expand, and has added more than 150,000 people to its rolls since 2014. That's because unanimous opposition is expected from Democrats in a chamber in which Republicans hold a narrow 52-48 majority. This means that able-bodied, childless adults in Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Mexico and Washington could lose coverage much earlier under the Senate bill.

Realizing they're outnumbered, Democrats and their liberal allies were planning events around the US over the next few days aimed at building public opposition to the bill. Each state has expanded Medicaid and has a GOP senator. AP reporter Thomas Beaumont contributed from Des Moines, Iowa.

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