ACA Update | July 21, 2017: Despite Public Opposition, ACA Repeal Still Alive; Vote Planned Early Next Week
Thanks to your advocacy efforts here in D.C., the phone calls, emails and letters to your Members of Congress, YOU helped stop this destructive legislation from becoming law last week, as Republican leader Mitch McConnell had planned. But there is no time to celebrate, as McConnell is intent on going against public opinion and repealing the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
Here’s what happened this week:
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) reported that the revised BCRA would result in 22 million more American uninsured. The report does not include an analysis of the Cruz amendment that would let insurers sell “skinny plans” that don’t meet Obamacare insurance regulations, as long as they also sell ACA-compliant ones. Premiums on the individual market under this version are expected to increase by significantly in coming years. The Cruz amendment would destabilize the insurance market and leave even more people uninsured.
As The Hill reported, Senators are hurtling toward an Obamacare repeal vote early next week, even though they currently lack the votes for either option on the table. Senators are unclear what they will be voting on next week, with just days to go before a critical vote to begin debate that’s expected to come on Tuesday. The two leading options are a repeal-only bill or an updated version of the Senate’s repeal-and-replacement measure.
The CBO has estimated that 32 million people would lose coverage under the repeal and delay bill. This is the same bill that the Senate passed in 2015 but was vetoed by President Obama. CBO updated its estimates of the 2015 bill earlier this year. The repeal/delay bill eliminates the Medicaid expansion, but does not have the same deep cuts to the Medicaid program as the AHCA and BCRA. It retains patient protections for people with pre-existing conditions, but eliminates subsidies and cost-sharing reductions to help people afford insurance, which would lead to significant premium increases (20-25% in the first year, up to 100% by 2026) and coverage losses.
The coverage losses alone would be devastating for cancer patients and survivors. We oppose ACA “repeal and delay,” as 32 million Americans would lose coverage and premiums would rise, making insurance unaffordable for cancer patients and survivors.
Please keep calling your Senators and ask they vote NO and work together in a bipartisan manner to improve health insurance. Call today at (844) 257-6227.