In their latest efforts to bring back the failed Trumpcare and eliminate Obamacare at all costs, House Republicans appear to have exempted themselves from a key part of the overhaul: Keeping coverage for preexisting conditions.
The new changes to the bill would allow states to apply for waivers for certain ObamaCare provisions, such as a ban on insurers charging premiums based on a customer’s health and the requirement that insurers’ basic health plans cover certain services, like prescription drugs and mental health.
however, the GOP amendment exempts members of Congress and their staffs to ensure that they will still be protected by those ObamaCare provisions. The exemption was flagged by health law professor Tim Jost.
Democrats quickly jumped on the development, arguing that Republicans are willing to take away protections for the general public, but not themselves.
“The best evidence yet that the new GOP repeal plan is a disaster for people’s health care is that the GOP exempted members of Congress from living under it,” said Leslie Dach, director of the Protect Our Care Campaign, one of the main groups fighting repeal.
A spokesperson for Rep. Tom MacArthur (R-N.J.), who authored this part of the amendment, confirmed that members of Congress and their staffs would get to keep those pre-existing conditions regulations, according to The Hill.
So basically: Sick people can be charged more while Congress grows into a race of indestructible super-strong healthy overlords who think you should do what they say, not like they do. Just like it says in the Bible!
The MacArthur-Meadows language is helping to woo some conservatives, who argue that the ObamaCare regulations are driving up premium costs and note that high-risk pools would be able to fill the gap.
However, the bill still faces opposition on both sides and has a long way to go before it would even get close to becoming reality.
A Washington Post/ABC News poll this week found that 70 percent of the public wants pre-existing condition protections to apply nationwide and not be up to each state.