On Thursday morning, at long last, the Republican special committee tasked with secretly devising the latest version of the American Health Care Act elected to finally release their latest draft to the public.
After seeming as if they might have held a Senate floor vote without ever letting the public see the bill, it is a relief that experts and the public at-large can now examine the nearly 150 pages before next week’s planned vote.
Because of the GOP’s handling of the bill, regular Americans are now excitedly (and anxiously) perusing the bill at the same time as their elected officials, searching for the changes that could affect their lives irreparably.
Initial analysis of the bill (just minutes after it was released) reveal that the latest version of the AHCA continues to put an end to the pre-existing conditions coverage guaranteed by the ACA. The latest draft also administers cuts to Medicaid, despite earlier promises by Trump not to do so, and hands generous tax cuts to the very wealthy.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Republicans unveil health care bill scuttling Obama law, cuts Medicaid, slashes taxes for wealthy.
— Bradd Jaffy (@BraddJaffy) June 22, 2017
In addition, despite having earlier said that the provisions would be left out, the latest version of Trumpcare also defunds Planned Parenthood, a long-time goal of Tea Party Republicans like Paul Ryan and Ted Cruz. With this sort of additional violation, Senate Democrats are guaranteed to fight the bill that much harder.
Defunding Planned Parenthood and restrictions on subsidies for insurance plans that provide abortions are still in the bill, despite reports pic.twitter.com/zTd318IxSk
— Ema O’Connor (@o_ema) June 22, 2017
Before the vote can be held on this version of the AHCA, we must still await the latest CBO score from the Congressional Budget Office which will inform the American public just how many people will lose coverage under this new version, and how much it will cost us.
Still, despite what the CBO, the American public, or Democratic officials have to say, Republicans are determined to pass this version of the bill if they can obtain consensus within their own party.