What's Next for Obamacare in Congress? - NECN

What's Next for Obamacare in Congress?

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Moderate Republican lawmakers are backing away from President Donald Trump's suggestion of repealing Obamacare without a replacement in place.

    (Published Tuesday, July 18, 2017)

    With the Senate repeal and replace of Obamacare off the table -- and general repeal of the law also not catching on -- many health care advocates and consumers are wondering what's next.

    MIT economics professor Jonathan Gruber says recent developments leave health care in the U.S. largely where it’s been, and he is not surprised that moderate Republicans are backing away from President Trump's suggested Plan B: repeal only.

    "Repealing Obamacare would cost 32 million uninsured and double premiums according to the Congressional budget office," Gruber said.

    So what happens now? Gruber, considered the architect of Romneycare in Massachusetts -- which became the blueprint for the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare -- says probably nothing.

    "I think at this point the highest probability is they can't get agreement on anything and they move on to tax reform," he added.

    But Governor Charlie Baker, former CEO of Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, does not think that is a great idea.

    "I don't think this means that everybody should just take their ball and go home and forget about health care. There still a lot of things they need to work on," he said.

    Gruber says he has a glimmer of hope that some Republicans and Democrats can come together to create a bipartisan plan, adding, "But are we 100 times better off with nothing then with any of these Republican alternatives? Most certainly."

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