While the Senate considers a draft bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, industry groups are divided over whether the legislation would remedy or worsen the current health care environment - particularly for older Americans.
"I have deep concerns with details in the U.S. Senate's plan to fix America's health care system and the resources needed to help our most vulnerable, including those who are dealing with drug addiction, mental illness and chronic health problems and have nowhere else to turn", Ohio Gov. John Kasich, a Republican, said in a Twitter message. Rand Paul of Kentucky, Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, Ted Cruz of Texas, and Mike Lee of Utah-said they would not support the bill because it was too generous to low-income and working people, but Heller is the first from the other side of the GOP spectrum saying that the punishment it would inflict on his constituents is too brazen.
McConnell, R-Ky., can not pass the bill if he loses more than two Republican votes. We know that. And we know that there needs to be something that helps keep healthy people in the pool, because if we leave people to their own devices to buy health insurance when they get sick, that will just drive the cost up for everybody.
Here's the big problem facing the new Senate TrumpCare bill: nearly everybody gets a worse deal.
Bend the Arc: Jewish Action also decried the measure.
The Senate bill is right to cap federal payments to states for Medicaid beneficiaries, although the details-especially the absurdly long phase-in-are debatable. The state has added 200,000 more people to its program under the Obama overhaul.
Trump had privately referred to healthcare legislation passed by the House last month as "mean", according to congressional sources.
In Oregon, lawmakers this week passed a health care tax meant to fix a $1.4 billion, two-year budget deficit attributed largely to Medicaid expansion costs.
Senate Republicans release bill to cut Medicaid
They said the measure missed delivering a GOP promise to Americans "to repeal Obamacare and lower their health care costs". Several other Republicans , including moderate Susan Collins of ME , are still undecided about the legislation.
Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev., facing a tough re-election fight next year, said he had "serious concerns' about the bill's Medicaid reductions". The Senate Republicans' plan puts a lid on that by rolling back the Obama-era expansion of the program and then granting states a set amount of money for each person enrolled. He said the second biggest lie is that if the GOP bill passes, premiums will go down. "I can not support a bill that is going to result in tens of millions of people losing their health insurance".
"It does not appear this draft as written will accomplish the most important promise that we made to Americans: to repeal Obamacare and lower their health care costs", the four wrote in a joint statement.
The 142-page bill would create a new system of federal tax credits to help people buy health insurance, while offering states the ability to drop numerous benefits required by the Affordable Care Act, like maternity care, emergency services and mental health treatment. The additional funds would continue through 2020, and be gradually reduced until they are entirely eliminated in 2024. Jonathan Ingram of the Foundation for Government Accountability, in a recent report, recommended allowing states to redetermine eligibility more frequently and thereby culling their rolls of ineligible individuals.
"There isn't anything in this bill that would lower premiums", he said.
That would ease costs for younger people, but increase them for the older people on fixed incomes. She says she'd like to see a more open debate.
The Senate legislation provides less money, however, for the opioid epidemic, allocating $2 billion in 2018, compared with $45 billion over 10 years in the House version. Discrimination based on pre-existing conditions could become the norm again.
The Affordable Care Act offered help paying premiums to people earning between 100 to 400 percent of the poverty line, under the assumption that those under the poverty line would be covered by Medicaid.