As March Madness continues for college basketball, the real madness is happening on Capitol Hill. This Thursday, the House looks to bring up a vote on the GOP replacement to Obamacare, otherwise known as the American Health Care Act (AHCA).
House Speaker Paul Ryan told Fox News that despite previous rejections, they would be making amendments to the bill to ensure its passage in the House and Senate. Luckily for millennials, many of the benefits remain intact.
On Monday night, House GOP leaders released an amended version of the AHCA with several policy and technical changes. Some of these key changes include increasing tax credits to seniors to help pay for insurance, eliminating Obamacare taxes in 2017 instead of 2018, and giving more power to the states in terms of Medicaid expansion.
Of the benefits that would help millennials, healthcare premiums will be substantially reduced. Additionally, they will receive a tax credit to reduce out-of-pocket healthcare expenses and incentivize millennials to sign up for insurance, thus raising overall healthcare enrollment.
After the new improvements to the AHCA were made, Speaker Ryan said, “We are now one step closer to keeping our promise to the American people and ending the Obamacare nightmare.”
However, judging from the House Freedom caucus and its chairman Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC), the nightmare looks it will continue. Despite the changes that were made to the new healthcare law, the House Freedom caucus is standing firm in not voting for the bill, unless it’s a full repeal of Obamacare.
On Tuesday morning, President Trump met with House GOP leaders on Capitol and reportedly singled out Meadows and Republican dissenters for their defiance.
A source inside the room relayed Trump’s message in which he said, “I believe many of you will lose in 2018.”
Rep. John Duncan (R-TN) told The Hill about Trump’s meeting, “He told us if we don’t pass this bill on Thursday, it will put everything in jeopardy that he wants to do, his agenda.”
Meadows shrugged off the remarks, telling reporters after the meeting, “I serve at the pleasure of the people of western North Carolina, and when you serve at their pleasure, it’s only those 750,000 people that can send you home.”
Freedom caucus founder and member Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) told Red Alert Politics last week that the current tax credits in place give millennials a new entitlement, and believes a clean repeal will do just that.
While many provisions in the bill that help millennials remain, the 30 percent surcharge for insurers who’ve had a lapse in coverage still exists. This could adversely affect young adults whose healthcare needs have not yet been prioritized.
According to the New York Times, 136 House Republicans support the bill, 52 are undecided or unclear, and 48 have concerns or oppose. The bill needs 216 votes to pass the House.