It didn't matter that no one in the congress had read the bill, it didn't matter that the Congressional Budget Office hadn't scored the bill. It didn't matter that the bill will wind up throwing millions off their healthcare. It didn't even matter that the first two times they tried to pass this piece of garbage through the Congress it was soundly rejected.
No, all that mattered was this was a win for Donald.
The house Republicans passed their Trumpcare bill through by feverishly pressuring Republicans until finally they gave in and passed the bill 217-213, with 20 Republicans still voting “no” and not a single Democrat voting for it...
When they tried to pass this bill through the Congress the first two times in March the CBO and Joint Committee on Taxation projected it would lead to: 24 million fewer people covered over 10 years; higher premiums for older customers; and lower premiums for young and healthy people, achieved mainly by pricing out the sick and old. The new version of the bill could lead to even more uninsured and even worse access for people with pre-existing conditions.
This was just too much for even the Republicans to stomach as they knew they would have to go home and face their constituents who would have these horrible facts to throw at them when they held their town halls.
That is why this time they didn't let the CBO and Joint Committee on Taxation score the bill.
Let's take a look at what the bill does...
• The bill would reverse the Affordable Care Act’s gains in health coverage by getting rid of the two things that made it possible: expanded Medicaid and generous tax credits for private insurance available to low-income people. With no CBO report there’s no official accounting of how many fewer people would be covered. However, the new version includes the same coverage provisions that the scorekeepers of the old one predicted would cause 18 million people to lose coverage over this year and next year and millions more during the coming decade.
• The bill would slash federal spending on Medicaid by $880 billion, or one fourth of the entire program.
• The bill would wind down the Medicaid expansion that has provided coverage to millions in the District of Columbia and 31 states that took advantage of this part of the Affordable Care Act.
• The bill would fundamentally transform Medicaid into an entitlement program available to anyone who qualifies ― mostly poor children, pregnant women, people with disabilities and senior citizens ― by capping federal spending. Instead of the federal government and the states sharing the expenses for covering these individuals, states would receive a smaller lump sum of money each year based on how many Medicaid enrollees they have. Faced with this shortfall, states would be forced to reduce benefits, the number of people they cover, how much they pay medical providers or some combination of those things.
• The bill would remove the Affordable Care Act's tax credits that people can use to reduce their monthly health insurance premiums if they earn up to four times the federal poverty level ― which is $98,400 for a family of four. In their place, it offers much smaller tax credits that are pegged only to age, and don’t vary by income or geography.
• The bill would eliminate the individual mandate that says most Americans must obtain health coverage or face tax penalties and the mandate that says large employers must offer health benefits to workers. That means there would be no money to pay for the the most popular parts of the program like eliminating discrimination for pre-existing conditions and allowing children to stay on their parents plan until they turn 26.
• The bill would weaken protections for pre-existing conditions allowing health insurance companies to reject applicants based on their health or medical history. In addition they would no longer be forced to charge everyone the same premiums for their policies regardless of pre-existing conditions.
The original version of the American Health Care Act left that popular rule in place, but the version the House passed doesn’t allowing states to waive that rule for health insurance companies, and allow insurers to turn away people with pre-existing conditions or to charge them higher rates than healthy people.
• The bill would permit states to disregard the Affordable Care Act’s “essential health benefits” standards that require insurers to cover basic services like physician visits, hospitalizations and prescription drugs. This would free health insurance companies to sell policies that cover very little.
• The bill would allow health insurance companies to sell plans with even bigger deductibles, according to the CBO enabling insurers to offer plans that cover a smaller percentage of a typical person’s medical costs, leaving patients on the hook for more out-of-pocket costs.
• The bill would enable states to loosen limits on how much extra customers in their 50s and 60s can be charged for health insurance. The Affordable Care Act had capped this at three times what the youngest policyholder pays but the GOP bill would let states increase it to five times a younger person’s premiums.
• The bill would provides states with $130 billion dollar slush fund that they can distribute to health insurance companies even if those companies reject people with pre-existing conditions or charge them higher premiums.
• The bill would jeopardizing coverage for children, people with disabilities and elderly people in nursing homes.
• The bill would block Medicaid funds to Planned Parenthood, which could strip birth control access and preventive health care from an estimated 390,000 low-income women.
Andrea's the really good part...
• The bill would give $600 billion in tax cuts for wealthy people and health care corporations.
Having done such hard work getting this tremendous very very good bill passed Trump took a televised victory lap in a Rose Garden ceremony usually reserved for a bill signing, not after passage in just one house of Congress. Trump, while surrounded by almost fifty House Republicans whom he had bussed over for the occasion, said...
"It's going to be an unbelievable victory, actually, when we get it through the Senate,"
Trump then cited his electoral success and reminded his fellow Republicans he has only been a politician for a short period of time...
"How am I doing? OK, I'm President! Hey, I'm President! do you believe it? Right?"
While Trump and the Republicans clapped, cheered, took selfies and generally whooped it up various medical organizations were sounding the alarm bells at what the Republicans had just passed.
The American Medical Association said in a statement that although change is needed in the health care system, people with pre-existing health conditions...
"face the possibility of going back to the time when insurers could charge them premiums that made access to coverage out of the question."
The AARP called the bill "deeply flawed" and expressed concerns about "unaffordable" plans people with pre-existing conditions may face. A statement from Executive Vice President Nancy LeaMond added that the legislation would put an...
"Age Tax on us as we age, harming millions of American families with health insurance, forcing many to lose coverage or pay thousands of dollars more for health care."
The American Cancer Society expressed concerns that the bill will leave cancer patients unable to pay for plans, arguing that the bill would make pre-existing condition protections...
Meanwhile hundreds of people took to the nation’s capitol to protest the passage of a bill that could start the repeal and replacement of Obamacare chanting slogans like “vote them out” and “shame, shame, shame,”
But all those warnings and protests are meaningless... Because Donald got his win.