On January 8, President Obama vetoed a Republican-backed measure that would have repealed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. He wrote, “Republicans in the Congress have attempted to repeal or undermine the Affordable Care Act over 50 times. Rather than refighting old political battles by once again voting to repeal basic protections that provide security for the middle class, members of Congress should be working together to grow the economy, strengthen middle-class families, and create new jobs. Because of the harm this bill would cause to the health and financial security of millions of Americans, it has earned my veto.”
Republicans have voted more than 50 times over the past five years to repeal Obamacare* This number is disputed by the GOP, who say the actual number is still in the single digits. The other votes, they say, have included defunding measures to cripple the law, delaying measures to slow down major provisions and attempts to fix portions of the law that passed both houses of Congress and were signed by the president.
In the wake of the veto, House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wi, said:
It’s no surprise that someone named Obama vetoed a bill repealing Obamacare.
But we will hold a vote to override this veto, taking this process all the way to the end under the Constitution … This law will collapse under its own weight, or it will be repealed, because all those rules and procedures Senate Democrats have used to block us from doing this, we have shown now that there is a clear path to repealing Obamacare without 60 votes in the Senate. If we are sending this bill to a Republican president, it will be gone.”
What will be the ultimate fate of Obamacare? It likely depends on who becomes president. A new presidential term will begin Jan. 2017, so it’s worth exploring what the potential outcomes would mean to PPACA. Here’s what the candidates have said about the health care law:
For months, Trump only promised a PPACA replacement that would be “something terrific.” He has since provided more details on how he wants to repeal and replace the law. He plans to allow people to buy health insurance across state lines. He has also promised to make sure that everyone has health insurance in a way that lowers rates for most Americans. In order to help the poorest quarter of the population, Trump says, he’d “make a deal with existing hospitals to take care of people.”
“For the most part it’s going to be a private plan and people are going to be able to go out and negotiate great plans with lots of different competition with lots of competitors with great companies and they can have their doctors, they can have plans, they can have everything.”
Although he voted for PPACA, Sanders believes the law doesn’t go far enough. He would like to replace it with a nationwide single-payer health care system known as Medicare For All.
“He has always believed that health care is a human right and should be guaranteed to all Americans regardless of wealth or income. He prizes the health and wellness of individuals over corporate profits. Additionally, he supports future legislation to curb drug costs and tackle fraud in the industry. Altogether, universal health care serves as a strong foundation for his policy goals.”
Cruz’s Obamacare alternative, called the Health Care Choices Act, would allow the purchase of health insurance across state lines and would undo much of PPACA, including insurance marketplaces and subsidies to help people afford coverage.
“Republicans must offer the American people alternatives that lower costs and break the status quo that favors big government and big health care business over hardworking Americans.”
The quickly fading Bush has unveiled a detailed proposal for repealing and replacing PPACA. It would offer a less regulated system emphasizing a “consumer-directed approach.” It would also provide Americans with tax credits to buy catastrophic health care plans and replace the Cadillac Tax with another policy imposing higher taxes on expensive health plans.
“Too many Americans are struggling to meet the cost of rising deductibles and drug prices.”
A strong advocate of PPACA, Clinton has been critical of rising insurance premiums and high out-of-pocket costs since the law was put into place. She has proposed changes to address high deductibles, including a tax on “excessive” out-of-pocket costs. She supports repealing the Cadillac Tax.