The House Rules Committee plans to discuss the rules governing House floor debate on H.R. 1213 – a bill that would repeal federal health insurance exchange funding requirements – at 5 p.m. today.
Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, introduced H.R. 1213 to repeal Section 1311(a) of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (PPACA).
PPACA Section 1311(a) is supposed to provide federal funding so that states can use to start a new system of state-regulated American Health Benefit Exchanges.
Low-income and moderate-income individuals could use a new system of tax subsidies to buy coverage through the exchanges.
The coverage sold through the exchanges would have to meet minimum federal standards and the standards that apply to all individual health insurance policies, but a state could decide whether an exchange should use its negotiating clout to get better, cheaper policies onto the exchange or simply open the exchange to all qualified products.
The Upton bill is just 70 words long:
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. REPEALING MANDATORY FUNDING TO STATES TO ESTABLISH AMERICAN HEALTH BENEFIT EXCHANGES.
(a) IN GENERAL.–Section 1311(a) of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (42 U.S.C. 13031(a)) is repealed.
(b) RESCISSION OF UNOBLIGATED FUNDS.–Of the funds made available under such section 1311(a), the unobligated balance is rescinded.
Republicans have proposed no amendments to the bill; Democrats have proposed 11 amendments.
Many of the proposed amendments call for the U.S. Government Accountability Office to
study the possible effects of repealing federal health exchange funding.
Rep. Lynn Woolsey, D-Calif., has proposed an amendment that “would preserve the competitive health insurance exchanges while also enacting a public health insurance option, which would compete with private plans within the exchanges.”
The Rules Committee will be posting video of the exchange funding repeal bill meeting On the Web.