House Republicans have directed four committees to draft legislation to replace the healthcare reform law.
The GOP’s goal is to create a series of “discrete bills” that would achieve some of the same goals as the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), while exercising restraint in the use of federal power.
By a vote of 253 to 175, the House charged four committees — Education and Workforce, Energy and Commerce, Judiciary, and Ways and Means — with crafting the legislation.
The vote came shortly after the House passed a bill to repeal the PPACA. However that bill was voted down in the Democrat-controlled Senate.
The goals House Republicans have stated they hope to accomplish through the new bills the committees will draft include:
- lowering insurance premiums through increased competition and choice
- preserving patients’ abilities to keep their health plans if they like them
- providing people with pre-existing conditions access to affordable health coverage
- reforming the medical liability system to reduce unnecessary and wasteful healthcare spending
- increasing the number of insured Americans
- protecting the doctor-patient relationship
- providing the States greater flexibility to administer Medicaid programs
- expanding incentives to encourage personal responsibility for healthcare coverage and costs
- prohibiting taxpayer funding of abortions
- provide “conscience protections” for healthcare providers
- eliminating “duplicative government programs” that create wasteful spending
- not accelerating the insolvency of Medicare, and
- easing the tax burden on Americans.
Sounds like some pretty solid objectives. Now let’s see if they can pull them off.