Two days after the U.S. House voted again to repeal the Obama health law, a group of senior Republicans in the Congress unveiled the basics of their own health plan, arguing it’s time to replace much of the system put in place during the Obama Administration.
“The country needs a better path forward, which is why we are advancing the Patient Choice, Affordability, Responsibility, and Empowerment (Patient CARE) Act,” said Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI), who was introducing the basics of the plan along with Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC).
The plan is just that – a plan – as it is not a real bill with legislative language at this point.
It also isn’t clear whether this becomes the vehicle for an actual GOP alternative to the Obama health law, or whether this joins other Republican ideas on the sidelines – but never gets a vote in either the House or Senate.
Some of the highlights include:
+ Repealing the Obama health law and the taxes associated with it
+ Eliminating the individual and employer mandates
+ Medical malpractice reforms
+ Keeping some items in the Obama health law, like no lifetime limits on individual health benefits, no one being denied coverage due to pre-existing conditions and letting children stay on their parents’ insurance plans until age 26.
Initial reaction from Democrats was a big thumbs down.
“It raises health care costs on working families and increases the number of uninsured,” said House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi at a news conference.
“It can’t possibly be taken seriously,” Pelosi told reporters.