Trump’s Plan to ‘Let Obamacare Fail’

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US President Donald Trump has said that the new Republican healthcare policy should be to allow the current law to collapse, stating that ‘I’m not going to own [Obamacare]’

One of the priorities of Trump’s administration was to replace Obamacare, but Republican efforts to do so have collapsed with two of the party’s senators announcing their opposition to the proposed bill.

The proposed alternative to Obamacare involved some significant changes. Steep cuts to Medicaid were discussed, a social healthcare programme for families and individuals with limited resources. The plan also removed the individual mandate requiring all Americans to have health insurance or pay a tax penalty and instead proposed a six-month lockout period for anyone who lets their health coverage lapse for more than two months.

In fact, out of all the major Obamacare policies, the only one that the Republican bill would not change at all is the requirements for insurers to allow children under the age of 26 to be covered by their parents’ policies.

Two of the Republican senators, Mike Lee and Jerry Moran, came out against the bill on Monday night, after criticising it for not going far enough in repealing Obamacare. Two other senators, Rand Paul and Susan Collins had also already opposed the bill, meaning that the Republicans, who hold 52 seats in the 100-member senate, no longer have a majority for the bill.

Some moderate Republicans also criticised the bill for harming some of their vulnerable constituents. On top of this, polls have shown that Obamacare has gained popularity among Americans.

After the opposition shown against the bill, the chamber will likely vote early next week on a motion for repealing Obamacare only, with no replacement, after Trump announcing that this should be the new Republican healthcare policy, and that a replacement should be made later. However, with at least three Republicans also against this plan, this is unlikely to be passed either.

Many people are against the simple ‘repeal’ plan, with Democratic senate leader Chuck Schumer saying that ‘[Trump] is actively, actively trying to undermine the healthcare system in this country’.

However, Trump soon changed his tune. After saying on Monday he planned to actively repeal Obamacare, by Tuesday he was suggesting that he was planning to simply ‘let Obamacare fail’ on its own.

Without an immediate replacement bill, it has been estimated that millions of people would lose their health insurance.

It looks likely that there will be many more changes of statement in the coming days regarding Obamacare.

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Sub-Editor for the Wessex Scene 2016/17 and 17/18. English and History student

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