Second Time Around
Second time's the charm?
The health care vote was scheduled after the White House and congressional leaders barraged rank-and-file holdouts with pressure in recent days and claimed they had the votes to prevail.Those mandates are part of what has been killing Obamacare in the states as insurers bailed. This may not be the end, but it is perhaps a beginning...
But in the Senate, some Republicans consider the House measure too harsh.
The bill would eliminate tax penalties Obama's law which has clamped down on people who don't buy coverage and it erases tax increases in the Affordable Care Act on higher-earning people and the health industry. It cuts the Medicaid program for low-income people and lets states impose work requirements on Medicaid recipients. It transforms Obama's subsidies for millions buying insurance -- largely based on people's incomes and premium costs -- into tax credits that rise with consumers' ages.
The measure would retain Obama's requirement that family policies cover grown children until age 26.
But states could get federal waivers freeing insurers from other Obama coverage requirements. With waivers, insurers could charge people with pre-existing illnesses far higher rates than healthy customers, boost prices for older consumers to whatever they wish and ignore the mandate that they cover specified services like pregnancy care.