House Passes Repeal of Health Care Law

Libby Casey, APRN – Washington DC

The U.S. House has passed a bill repealing the 2010 Health Care Law.  This evening’s vote largely broke down along party lines, 245 to 189.  Given the Republican dominance in the House, the vote was no surprise.  But it’s not expected to survive the Senate which is still controlled by Democrats.

Alaska Republican Congressman Don Young voted to repeal it.

Even though Young says many of his constituents want the health care law overturned, recent polls actually show Americans split on the value of it.  A recent survey by Gallop shows 46 percent of Americans favoring repeal and 40 percent against it.  Supporters say approval for the health care law will continue to climb as people begin to see the benefits, like being able to keep kids on insurance longer, until age 26.

The White House and Democrats are swinging back against the Republican repeal effort.  The Department of Health and Human Services released numbers Tuesday saying that 318,000 Alaskans have pre-existing medical conditions, and could be denied coverage without the health care law, which requires insurance companies to take clients regardless of their pre-existing conditions.

Republicans say those numbers are inflated.

Congressman Don Young says Republicans will put forth a smaller, leaner bill that will tackle problems like pre-existing conditions, but not go as far as the Democrats’ 2010 law.

The repeal bill is expected to die in the Senate, and the President would not sign it into law anyway.  But Young says Wednesday’s vote was not just symbolic.

The House will vote Thursday to give four committees the green light to start crafting new health care legislation.  Republican leadership says it’s not setting a deadline on when the new ideas will be put forth.

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