October 18th, 2011 – Republican lawmakers feel that after next year’s election they can not only retake the White House, but also garner enough political muscle in both the Senate and House to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) signed into law by President Obama last year.
The big question remains, what will they replace it with. There has been talk of doing away with Employer Sponsored Health Insurance and letting consumers choose their own plans, for which they might receive tax credits to offset the cost. While this is idea is popular with many economists and looks good on paper, it would mean upsetting the status quo and that reeks of political risk.
While the majority of Americans are against the PPACA law, popular opinion still dictates that any new plan must help address the ever-increasing health care costs (which drive up health insurance premiums), help people with uninsurable health conditions and provide assistance to those who make too much to be on public assistance but not enough to be able to afford health insurance.
If Republicans win even a narrow majority in the Senate they could use budget reconciliation to cut hundreds of billions of dollars in spending needed to subsidize coverage for millions of Americans, effectively gutting the law.