My long time friend Michael Cannon is the director of health policy studies at Cato Institute. I recently had an opportunity to catch up with Michael at Cato’s packed house conclave at the Ritz Naples. Time is always at a premium at these overflow room policy events, and Michael could have used some more running room. Nonetheless attendees clearly grasped Michael’s primary message regarding ObamaCare “full repeal is better than partial repeal.” In a recent, all encompassing article, from the Cato Institute Michael gave readers the whole story from A to Z. He writes:
After seven years of promising to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA), commonly known as ObamaCare, Republicans are toying with a dangerous strategy that would repeal the law’s mandates and subsidies but leave intact its the most harmful feature — the regulations it imposes on health insurance. This is despite warnings that a partial repeal would be far more disruptive. A new report by the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) shows just how much more disruptive.
Under full repeal not only would premiums automatically fall for the vast majority of Exchange enrollees, but Congress could proactively provide a safety net for those who still cannot afford coverage and enact further reforms that improve healthcare for all Americans. Medicaid block grants, expanded health savings accounts, and other reforms would make healthcare better, more affordable, and more secure through lower prices and more sustainable coverage. Congress could even do it all in one bill.
With a 52-seat majority, Republicans don’t have the 60 votes necessary to overcome a Democratic filibuster of a repeal bill. But Senate rules do, in fact, allow repeal of Obamacare’s insurance regulations through the special “budget reconciliation” process that requires only 51 votes to approve legislation. Even if the Senate parliamentarian misinterprets those rules — and this would be an egregious misinterpretation — a majority of the Senate can overrule that misinterpretation.
In short, the question is not whether Republicans can repeal the regulations. It is whether they have the will.
Reform cannot happen with ObamaCare’s regulations on the books, however. Every day Congress delays, it relegates more patients with expensive conditions to lousy, overpriced coverage.
Read more here.