The US House of Representatives has passed, with a near party-line vote of 227 to 198, a budget measure that allows Republicans to end major provisions of President Obama’s health care law without the threat of a Democratic filibuster in the Senate.
The Senate passed the same resolution by 51-48 on Thursday.
Now four committees— two in the Senate, two in the House — have to draft repeal legislation by 27th January.
The move raises a big question mark over medical coverage for more than 20 million Americans who have gained health insurance thank to the healthcare law, while members of both Republican and Democratic parties are concerned about a lack of replacement of the “Obamacare”
House Speaker Paul Ryan commented after the vote “By taking the first step toward repealing Obamacare, we are closer to giving Americans relief from the problems this law has caused, This resolution gives us the tools we need for a step-by-step approach to fix these problems and put Americans back in control of their health care.” adding, “This experiment has failed.”
The Obamacare has banned insurers from refusing coverage to people who are already ill, and curbed medical charges to the sick and elderly, but it also has been rocked by rising premiums, large fees and national insurers exiting the marketplaces.
So far, there are few details on how the Republicans would replace the Obamacare.
However, experts warns that some of the mandates the Republicans would try to end (the statute’s unpopular requirement that many individuals buy coverage and that larger companies provide it to workers) are needed to keep the insurance marketplace solvent.
In an interview to the the Washington Post, Donald Trump said he aims to replace Obamacare with a plan that would envisage “insurance for everybody”, he also said the plan was nearly finished and he was ready to unveil it. The Republican president-elect takes office on Friday 20th January.
Source: BBC News