Nov 30, 2017

Senate Will Likely Vote on Tax Reform Late Today or Tomorrow: Individual Mandate Penalty Relief is Included

Tax Reform: Individual Mandate Penalty

According to multiple sources, the U.S. Senate is close to voting on tax reform either later today or in the morning. Absent any late defections, the bill is expected to pass the Senate through a strict party-line vote. While the final version of the bill is not yet set, at this time, the current version includes the elimination of the individual mandate penalty currently provided by the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The House’s version of tax reform, the Tax Cut and Jobs Act, passed on November 16th, does not include the elimination of the individual mandate penalty, although the House… Read more

Jul 14, 2017

Is the New Senate Health Care Bill Already on Life Support?

Capitol Building with Reflection

As soon as the revised health care bill was introduced yesterday, criticism began and the margin for passage may already be compromised. Two Republican senators, moderate Susan Collins of Maine and conservative Rand Paul of Kentucky, have already announced they were not swayed by the revised bill. Republicans must have 50 out of 52 Republican Senators voting for the bill. As mentioned in my blog yesterday, the revised bill includes an amendment from Senator Ted Cruz (R., Tx.) which would allow insurers to sell “skimpy” plans, as long as they also offer at least one which meets the Affordable Care… Read more

Jun 21, 2017

Coming Tomorrow-Draft of Senate Health Care Bill

US Capitol View

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) stated today that a discussion draft of the Senate version of the American Health Care Act (AHCA) will be presented tomorrow, with plans for a vote next week before the July 4th break. He also stated that, although the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) still has to determine the cost of the bill, he expected that process would be completed next week.  Under the House version of the AHCA, an estimated 23 million people could lose their health care according to the CBO. Senator McConnell said on Tuesday that the Senate health-care bill would… Read more

Jun 20, 2017

Senate May Vote on Health Care Next Week (Quietly)

US Capitol Building

As reported in several media outlets, the Senate appears ready to schedule a vote on the American Health Care Act (AHCA), the proposed replacement for the Affordable Care Act (ACA). As mentioned in my blog yesterday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) wants a vote on the bill before the July 4 recess. The fate of Medicaid expansion and tax credits to consumers, sticking points for many Senate Republicans, appear to be close to resolution. Under an option being strongly considered, the AHCA would include deeper financial cuts to Medicaid, which may draw criticism from some Republican governors who desire… Read more

May 25, 2017

CBO Scores the American Health Care Act Passed by the House – Cuts Deficit and Number of People Insured

US Capitol Building

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has just released its estimate of the impact of the American Health Care Act (AHCA) passed by the U.S. House of Representatives on May 4th of this year. (As a reminder, the AHCA was passed by the House before the nonpartisan CBO could determine its impact.) According to the CBO, when compared to the current Affordable Care Act (ACA), the AHCA would leave 23 million more people uninsured while reducing the cumulative federal deficit by $119 billion over the next ten years. The CBO also estimates that insurance premiums under the AHCA will increase by… Read more