Republicans are inching closer to getting a bill that would repeal major parts of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) on President Obama’s desk — where it will almost certainly be vetoed.
The Senate passed the partial repeal bill, H.R. 3762, last month through the budget “reconciliation” process.
Supporters of a bill normally need at least 60 votes to get a bill through the Senate, to avoid the threat of a filibuster, or endless round of debate. But, under Senate budget reconciliation process rules, Senate leaders can get a budget reconciliation measure through with just 51 votes.
The website of House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy shows a House vote on H.R. 3762 will take place Wednesday. Fox News says the vote could come as early as Tuesday.
The version of bill the House is now being asked to approve is substantially different from a version it passed in October.
The previous version targeted the individual and employer mandates, along with the Cadillac plan excise tax and medical device tax. That version was denounced by some conservative groups as amounting to surrender on one of the GOP’s major campaign promises.
Although only a small group of Republicans in the House voted against that bill in protest, three key Republicans in the Senate, including Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio, pledged to oppose it unless it was rewritten to be deadlier to PPACA.
The new version attacks funding for the PPACA Medicaid expansion program and the PPACA public health insurance exchange premium subsidy program.
To overturn a presidential veto, supporters of the bill would need to get two-thirds majorities in both the House and the Senate.
Sixteen million Americans now have coverage obtained through PPACA programs.
Republicans have said they would find an alternative for people who would lose PPACA-related coverage if a PPACA repeal or partial repeal passed, but they have provided few details on how they’d accomplish that.
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