Republicans Launch One More Effort To Repeal Obamacare


On Wednesday, Republican senators introduced the Graham-Cassidy-Heller-Johnson health-care bill, the party's latest attempt at repealing and replacing ObamaCare. Dean Heller (NV), and Ron Johnson (WI) have come up with what they consider a last-ditch effort - and the GOP's best hope - to repeal Obamacare.

The Graham-Cassidy bill would cap what is now an open-ended benefit - which would be likely to force the state to eliminate health coverage for many of its poorest residents.

Republicans have been searching for eight months now to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.

While Republicans mull over these proposals, almost a dozen Senate Democrats are rallying behind legislation that aims to expand Medicare and create a single-payer health care system in America.

Our bill levels out an inequity in funding. But the bill would allow states to obtain waivers exempting them from many of Obamacare's regulations. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt. and various Democrats to unveil a new single-payer bill that would cover all Americans under a more comprehensive version of Medicare.

"We request that the Committee on Ways and Means, especially our Subcommittee on Health, likewise hold bipartisan hearings to set the course for expeditious action to stabilize individual insurance markets and lower costs", they wrote. And Sens. Lamar Alexander and Patty Murray, from the Senate's committee covering health care, are also reportedly working on a bipartisan Obamacare reform bill. The bill's backers cast it as a last chance for Republicans to repeal.

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The Graham-Cassidy bill has yet to gain full Republican support. Sens. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, Kamala Harris of California, Mazie Hirono of Hawaii, Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, Cory Booker of New Jersey, Brian Schatz of Hawaii, and Tom Udall of New Mexico all plan to attend Sanders announcement Wednesday.

Neither plan was thought likely to succeed in a Congress exhausted with fighting over the issue, raising questions over whether lawmakers would instead prop up the health benefits offered under former President Barack Obama's healthcare law.

For one thing, the bill, H.R. 1628, would rely on block grants.

If you want a single payer health care system, this is your worst nightmare. Tim Scott, a Republican from SC who added that the bill was the last "bullet left in the chamber".

But according to the Congressional Budget Office, several of the proposals in this bill would actually increase the federal deficit, including the proposed elimination of cost-sharing payments.

By making so many funding and coverage issues subject to future state decisions, the bill will make it hard for the CBO to estimate its impact.