(NationalSentinel) There have been a number of news reports in recent days which attempt to portray the Republican congressional majority as wavering on Obamacare repeal or, worse, not committed to it at all.
While there may be some nervous on Capitol Hill for Republicans to take away ownership of health care reform from Democrats and President Barack Obama, despite the disaster that the Affordable Care Act has become, there are reasons why the GOP cannot quickly push through their own reforms.
And that would be thanks to Obama and his outgoing administration.
On their way out the door, according to a report from the Congressional Research Service, “regulators at [Health and Human Services] finalized actions to ram through Obamacare changes and ensure Obamacare’s critical procedures and programs are locked in to 2019. According to data from CRS, the move to finalize individual program years has been happening earlier and faster in recent years,” the House Energy and Commerce Committee said.
In other words, with just days left in the administration, the federal department responsible for managing Obamacare -HHS – rammed through Obamacare changes that locked in key aspects of the law for years into the future, 2017 and 2018 for certain.
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“Despite millions of Americans clearly expressing their displeasure with Obamacare, the Obama administration took action on their way out the door to lock in the law’s framework to 2019. The administration’s blatant disregard for the will of the people paired with the law’s broken promises and skyrocketing rates make it easy to see why so many folks are frustrated with business as usual and ready for real change,” said Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Greg Walden, R-Oregon.
Adds the Washington Examiner:
The rule, which sets the plans that can be sold on the Affordable Care Act’s exchanges in 2018, is common and must be issued to give insurers an idea of what to expect for the coming coverage year. However, the Obama administration implemented the regulation much earlier than years past, and some in the GOP are worried it could complicate the incoming administration’s efforts to provide regulatory relief to insurers.
Complicate them, indeed, and by design.
Still, something must be done. Aetna, a major health insurer, has proclaimed that Obamacare is in a “death spiral,” with its CEO, Mark Bertolini, noting further his company will exit Obamacare exchanges at the end of this year.
“It’s not going to get any better; it’s getting worse,” he told Politico Pro.
Humana had also announced it would exit the Obamacare exchanges in 2018.
Republicans have plans to repeal and replace Obamacare, as does President Trump, but it’s going to be a complicated process not because GOP members and the White House no longer want to do it, but because our former president has made it as difficult as possible.