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Editor/Founder: Bill Smith, Ph.D. [aka: OzarkGuru & 2010 AFP National Blogger of the Year]
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One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato (429-347 BC)

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Better Care Reconciliation Act

ARRA News Service Update (6 pm): Please see legislative text for the Senate substitute amendment to H.R. 1628, the American Health Care Act (aka, Better Care). The link also includes a related explanatory document courtesy of the Senate Budget Committee in collaboration with their colleagues from the Senate Finance Committee and the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee.

The legislation repeals the vast majority of the harmful provisions of Obamacare and replaces it with better approaches that –
  • Help stabilize collapsing insurance markets that have left millions of Americans with no options.
  • Free the American people from the onerous Obamacare mandates that require them to purchase insurance they either don’t want or can’t afford.
  • Improve the affordability of health insurance.
  • Preserve access to care for Americans with pre-existing conditions.
  • Strengthen Medicaid for those who need it most by giving states more flexibility while ensuring that those who rely on this program won’t have the rug pulled out from under them.


‘If It Passes, It’ll Be The Greatest Policy Achievement By A GOP Congress In My Lifetime’
PRESIDENT TRUMP: ‘Plan… very meaningful’ “…we have a thing called healthcare that you may hear is percolating in the outside, as we've discussed.  And I think it's going to come out.  Obamacare is a disaster; it's dead.  Totally dead.  And we're putting in a plan today … we will hopefully get something done, and it will be something with heart and very meaningful.” (“Remarks by President Trump at American Leadership in Emerging Technology Event,” 6/22/2017)
  • VICE PRESIDENT PENCE: “…the United States Senate and Republican leadership is going to release a repeal-and-replace bill this morning. You know, the President and I are truly grateful to Leader Mitch McConnell and all the Senate Republicans for their deliberative efforts over the past month.” (Vice President Pence, Remarks, 6/22/2017)
HHS SEC. PRICE: “…we welcome the Senate’s proposal to provide Americans with much needed relief from Obamacare. The Senate’s proposal is built on patient-centered reforms that put the American people in charge of their healthcare decisions, not government, protecting patients, bringing down the cost of coverage, and expanding choices.” (Sec. Price, Press Release, 6/22/2017)

CMS ADMINISTRATOR: VERMA: “I appreciate the work of the Senate as they continue to make progress fixing the crisis in healthcare that has resulted from Obamacare. Skyrocketing premiums, rising costs and fewer choices have caused too many Americans to drop their insurance coverage. Today, Obamacare is in a death spiral and millions of Americans are being negatively impacted as a result. They are trapped by mandates that force them to purchase insurance they don't want and can't afford.” (CMS, Press Release, 6/22/2017)

‘The Senate Bill … Exactly The Kind Of Cuts To The Welfare State That Conservatives Have Consistently Failed To Achieve’

AVIK ROY: “Finished reading the Senate HC bill. Put simply: If it passes, it’ll be the greatest policy achievement by a GOP Congress in my lifetime.” (Avik Roy, @Avik, Twitter, 6/22/2017)

MAX EHRENFREUND: “Throughout the modern history of Congress, lawmakers have inexorably expanded progressive social policies, and while conservatives have successfully forestalled expansions to the social safety net, they've had very little success in reversing them. Right now, however, Republicans have a chance to buck that trend, as they prepare legislation aimed at repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.” (“Republicans’ Obamacare Repeal…,” The Washington Post, 6/22/2017)
  • “The Senate bill released on Thursday… would be exactly the kind of cuts to the welfare state that conservatives have consistently failed to achieve. … would bring down taxes, eliminate hundreds of billions of dollars in outlays on the social safety net and curtail the federal government's involvement in a crucial sector of the economy.” (“Republicans’ Obamacare Repeal…,” The Washington Post, 6/22/2017)
U.S. CHAMBER OF COMMERCE: “The Senate health care bill will help to stabilize crumbling insurance markets caused by the Affordable Care Act, work to curb runaway premium increases, and jettison ill-conceived Washington mandates and taxes that have weighed heavily on our economy. This is an extremely important step in putting doctors and patients ahead of politicians when it comes to American health care. This bill appears to strike an important balance between providing ample attention to the much needed safety net for underserved communities without putting Washington in charge of health care. We have long sought this type of balanced solution that doesn’t jeopardize employer sponsored coverage, while seeking affordable access for all Americans. The Senate’s approach appears to do just that. We know that Obamacare is dangerously close to collapse as millions of Americans are left with fewer and fewer options for health insurance and urge Senators to move forward and ultimately pass this legislation without delay.” (U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Press Release, 6/22/2017)

ELIZABETH McKEE, Americans For Tax Reform: “The Senate healthcare bill cuts taxes for millions of middle-income families … Obamacare's taxes deprive working families and businesses of their hard-earned income. The Senate's Obamacare repeal bill abolishes these taxes and returns much-needed purchasing power to taxpayers.” (Elizabeth McKee, Op-Ed, “The Senate Healthcare Bill Cuts Taxes For Millions Of Middle-Income Families,” Washington Examiner, 6/22//2017)

AMERICANS FOR TAX REFORM: “The Senate’s Obamacare repeal bill abolishes the many middle class taxes that were imposed by President Obama and the Democrat party in 2010. Obama promised repeatedly that he would never raise any form of tax on any household making less than $250,000 per year. He lied. Although you’ll never hear it from the establishment media, the Senate’s Obamacare repeal bill:
-Abolishes the Obamacare Individual Mandate Tax which hits 8 million Americans each year.
-Abolishes the Obamacare Employer Mandate Tax.
-Abolishes Obamacare’s Medicine Cabinet Tax which hits the 20 million Americans with Health Savings Accounts and the 30 million Americans with Flexible Spending Accounts.
-Abolishes Obamacare’s Flexible Spending Account tax on 30 million Americans.
-Abolishes Obamacare’s Chronic Care Tax on 10 million Americans with high out of pocket medical expenses. This Obamacare tax imposed higher income taxes on households making an average of $53,000 per year.
-Abolishes Obamacare’s HSA withdrawal tax.
-Abolishes Obamacare’s 10% excise tax on small businesses with indoor tanning services.
-Abolishes the Obamacare health insurance tax.
-Abolishes the Obamacare 3.8% surtax on investment income.
-Abolishes the Obamacare medical device tax.
-Abolishes the Obamacare tax on prescription medicine.
-Abolishes the Obamacare tax on retiree prescription drug coverage.” (Americans For Tax Reform, Press Statement, 6/22/2017)

BRANDON ARNOLD, National Taxpayers Union: “The Senate’s recently unveiled “Better Care Reconciliation Act” represents yet another critical step toward repealing Obamacare and replacing it with a market-based approach to health care. The bill wisely scraps nearly all of Obamacare’s onerous taxes on individuals, families, and businesses. It provides states with additional flexibility to opt out of the current regulatory framework that is causing premiums to skyrocket. And it makes structural reforms to the Medicaid program that will encourage innovative approaches to providing care to the neediest Americans. While some will inevitably dwell on the bill’s imperfections, and those flaws do exist, it’s important to look at the bigger picture: if Congress wants to repeal Obamacare, it is absolutely imperative for the Senate to pass the Better Care Reconciliation Act and continue that process.” (National Taxpayers Union, Press Release, 6/22/2017)

Tags: Better Care Reconciliation Act, US Senate, Republicans, Americans for Tax Reform, National Taxpayer Union, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, President Trump, Vice President Mike Pence,  HHS Secretary Tom Price To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Posted by Bill Smith at 5:18 PM - Post Link

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