There are “serious problems” with Obamacare, says Sen. Jerry Moran, Republican of Kansas.
And Sen. Mike Lee, Republican of Utah, obviously hasn’t been crazy about the law either.
But both Senators, in statements tonight, signaled a crushing blow to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s effort for the chamber to consider the Republicans’ bill designed to replace the very measure Moran and Lee don’t like: Obamacare, or the Affordable Care Act. McConnell carried the GOP torch, especially for President Trump, a major loser in what is tantamount to a Republican fiasco.
In effect, Moran and Lee didn’t see the GOP’s Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017 as a suitable replacement for Obamacare. So the Republicans’ seven-year effort to get rid of the healthcare legislation has essentially failed, with McConnell unable to get enough votes among the Republicans’ 52-person majority in the Senate to do the job.
“There are serious problems with Obamacare, and my goal remains what it has been for a long time: to repeal and replace it,” said Moran in a statement. But he said the Republicans’ closed door meetings that resulted in the BCRA did not effectively “address healthcare’s rising costs” and was ill conceived.
“For the same reasons I could not support the previous version of this bill, I cannot support this one,” he added. “We should not put our stamp of approval on bad policy.”
Some of the issues that were of major concern to the public, including protections for pre-existing conditions, “increased access and lower overall costs” must now be looked at with a “fresh start,” Moran said.
Moran and Lee said they would be opposing any move to proceed, which McConnell had sought. The Senate Majority Leader delayed a vote because Sen. John McCain of Arizona is recovering from surgery.
“After conferring with trusted experts regarding the latest version of the Consumer Freedom Amendment, I have decided I cannot support the current version of the Better Care Reconciliation Act,” Sen. Lee said in a statement.
“In addition to not repealing all of the Obamacare taxes, it doesn’t go far enough in lowering premiums for middle-class families; nor does it create enough free space from the most costly Obamacare regulations,” Lee said. — Joe Cantlupe