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HomeNewsPoliticsSpeaker Ryan: AHCA ‘Closest We’ll Ever Get to Repealing ObamaCare’

Speaker Ryan: AHCA ‘Closest We’ll Ever Get to Repealing ObamaCare’

House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., explains the American Health Care Act, the ObamaCare replacement bill introduced by House Republicans, during a town hall-like press conference on March 9, 2017. (Photo: Courtesy of the Speaker)
House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., explains the American Health Care Act, the ObamaCare replacement bill introduced by House Republicans, during a town hall-like press conference on March 9, 2017. (Photo: Courtesy of the Speaker)

House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., explains the American Health Care Act, the ObamaCare replacement bill introduced by House Republicans, during a town hall-like press conference on March 9, 2017. (Photo: Courtesy of the Speaker)

House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., said the American Health Care Act (AHCA), the ObamaCare replacement bill is the “closest we’ll ever get to repealing ObamaCare.” Doing his best to explain and sell the AHCA, the House speaker characterized the health care reform bill as an “exciting” and “conservative wishlist” that Republicans have been waiting “decades” to pass.

“We as Republicans, who fought the creation of this law and accurately predicted it would not work, ran for office in 2010, in 2012, in 2014 and in 2016 on a promise if given the chance we would repeal and replace this law,” he said. “This is the closest we will ever get to repealing and replacing ObamaCare. The time is here. The time is now. This is the moment and this is the closest this will ever happen.”

“It really comes down to a binary choice.”

Mr. Ryan made the comment during a town-like press conference that took the place of his weekly address, and amid intense conservative opposition. He again said the bill is only the first in a three-phase process, in which the House of Representatives can use budget reconciliation. With the immediate addition of certain conservative provisions, such as the ability to purchase insurance across state lines, Democrats can filibuster reform and kill it.

Conservative groups and lawmakers are less than impressed with the AHCA, with Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kty., has dubbed “ObamaCare Lite.”

“The House leadership Obamacare Lite plan has many problems. It will not pass,” Sen. Paul said Tuesday. “Conservatives are not going to take it.”

Also at issue are the insurance company subsidies and individual ObamaCare subsidies, which Sen. Paul says were simply “renamed” refundable credits. House leadership says they are leveling the playing field for the individual insurance market, while critics say it’s just another entitlement.

Tonight, President Donald J. Trump will host members of the House Freedom Caucus at the White House for a bowling and pizza party, when he’ll try to do what he does best–make a deal. People’s Pundit Daily has confirmed that permitting competition across state lines will be actively pushed from the president’s bully pulpit in the second phase, though White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said he’s in “full sell mode.”

(Update: An earlier version of this article stated the bowling meeting would be held Tuesday, when in fact it should have stated Today.)

He has already begun to bring in those who have concerns, such the Club for Growth. David McIntosh, the Club’s president, met with the president on Wednesday to discuss potential additions to the bill.

“The President wants to get something done and he urged us to stay supportive. We laid out our major concerns about the lack of free-market reforms in this bill, the continuation of the Medicaid expansion, and the refundable tax credits,” Mr. McIntosh said. “The President listened and he told his staff to continue working on the bill, so we’re hopeful that this process will lead to a bill that actually repeals Obamacare and puts in free-market health care reforms.”

Speaker Ryan’s presentation begins at 15:20 mark:

[brid video=”120303″ player=”2077″ title=”Speaker Ryan&#39s Weekly Press Briefing”]

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