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HomeNewsPoliticsHouse Passes American Health Care Act (AHCA), ObamaCare Replacement Bill

House Passes American Health Care Act (AHCA), ObamaCare Replacement Bill

Votes on the American Health Care Act (AHCA) in Congress.
Votes on the American Health Care Act (AHCA) in Congress.

Votes on the American Health Care Act (AHCA) in Congress.

The Republican-controlled House of Representatives voted 217 to 213 to pass the American Health Care Act, the first step in an effort to replace ObamaCare as insurers bail from the markets.

The developments come after the conservative House Freedom Caucus decided to back the new legislation with the addition of the MacArthur Amendment, named for Tuesday Group head and moderate GOP Rep. Tom MacArthur of New Jersey. The MacArthur amendment permits states to repeal costs that were left in place under the original AHCA. People’s Pundit Daily was first to report that the HFC was on board with the latest version of the bill, which would be reintroduced this week after the initial version of the health care reform bill failed.

Now, an amendment proposed by Rep. Bill Long, R-Miss., an early supporter of President Donald J. Trump, gives greater protections for Americans with preexisting conditions by providing more funding for high risk pools. Rep. Long and Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., both said earlier in the week that they would oppose the HFC-backed bill including the MacArthur Amendment.

But they and a few other previous “no” votes switched after getting the additional protections for preexisting conditions, which accounts for roughly 4% of the market.

Lawmakers broke out in song, with a chorus of “Na na na na, Na na na na, Hey hey hey, Goodbye” as Democrats attempted to send a message that Republicans will lose control of Congress over the bill. However, as People’s Pundit Daily (PPD) has repeatedly shown, Democrats have lost more than a thousand elected offices since the passage of ObamaCare.

Regardless of the politics, the bill’s passage comes after large insurers continue to bail on the ObamaCare marketplaces, with the worst impact hitting individual insurance plans. Aetna on Wednesday announced they would not sell such health plans in Virginia next year because of expected financial losses due to ObamaCare.

House Freedom Caucus Chairman Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C. smiles as he speaks with the media on Capitol Hill in Washington, March 23, 2017. (Photo: AP)

House Freedom Caucus Chairman Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C. smiles as he speaks with the media on Capitol Hill in Washington, March 23, 2017. (Photo: AP)

“Despite significantly reducing our exchange footprint, our individual commercial products could potentially lose more than $200 million in 2017,” said Aetna spokesman T.J. Crawford in an email. “Based on that financial risk, and growing uncertainty in the marketplace, we will not offer on- or off-exchange individual plans in Virginia for 2018.”

Aetna, the nation’s third largest insurer, reduced their overall participation from 15 states to just 4 in 2017. Now they only offer individual plans in Delaware and Nebraska.

Iowans lost their last insurance provider that same day.

President Trump will host Republicans at the White House for a press conference and celebration. He took to Twitter before the vote to discuss the ongoing issues with ObamaCare in its current form.

Medica released a statement indicating it will not sell individual health policies in Iowa, meaning tens of thousands would be without options next year. The Minnesota-based health insurer would be following the other two providers, who also decided to pull out of the individual market in The Hawkeye State.

“Without swift action by the state or Congress to provide stability to Iowa’s individual insurance market, Medica will not be able to serve the citizens of Iowa in the manner and breadth that we do today,” the company’s statement said.

The AHCA now goes to the U.S. Senate, where Republicans have a much smaller majority.

“The status quo is unacceptable,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said in a statement. “The pain caused by ObamCare is real for millions of Americans. We must repeal and replace this failed law.”

Written by
Staff Writing Group

People's Pundit Daily covers breaking news and headlines in politics, business, the economy, markets, health and world news. Data-driven political analysis and commentary from the most accurate election projection model on the Internet.

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