Repealing healthcare reform
Assuming ObamaCare passes, the GOP is already making a pledge to repeal it ASAP part of their 2010 (and beyond) electoral strategy. But Igor Volsky over at the Wonk Room makes some good points indicating the political difficulty of doing so, putting side an Obama veto of any attempts:
1) The bill immediately prohibits insurers from rescinding coverage, imposing life-time or annual limits or denying coverage to children with pre-existing conditions.
2) Applicants who are unable to find insurance in the individual market, can purchase catastrophic coverage and young adults can stay on their parents’ policies until their 27th birthday.
3) Small businesses that provide health coverage will also be eligible for tax credits beginning in 2010.
4) The bill requires health insurers to spend 80 to 85 percent of all premium dollars on medical care and reduces the size of the coverage gap in Medicare Part D “by $500 in the first year.” The bill also guarantees “50 percent price discounts on brand-name drugs and biologics purchased by low and middle-income beneficiaries in the coverage gap.”
5) These benefits could also improve as the Senate bill moves into conference. Several House progressives have pledged to push the conference committee to move up the implementation date of the exchanges in the final bill and front load more benefits into the interim period of the final legislation.
The news regs on private health insurance are likely to be quite popular. More than likely, any GOP efforts will have to work within the general framework that is created, such as healthcare exchanges.