On Friday, March 24, United States House Republicans pulled their American Health Care Act (AHCA) from further consideration, and pulled it from a vote on Friday. They’d previously said that they would have a vote on March 23, the 7-year anniversary of the date that President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in 2010.
After a month of wrangling — not even a month, really; the Republican plan was only around under that name (the American Health Care Act) for 17 days, before it died. Or one could say that the House GOP pulled the plug on the legislation, allowing the bill to die a merciful death.
Why? The House GOP didn’t have enough votes to secure passage of the AHCA, even though the GOP has the majority of seats in the House.
On Friday, Trump blamed Democrats for the bill’s failure. We all know this is a blatant lie. Trump and Speaker Ryan did not need any Democratic votes in the Senate to pass the bill; they could have passed the bill with support from only Republican House members. But too many hard right Congressmen and Congresswomen (particularly the members of the Freedom Caucus, a group of House members who think that government should have nothing to do with regulation of the health care industry) didn’t like the bill — they thought it retained too many provisions of the ACA. There were also too many centrist/moderate House Republicans who thought that the bill was poorly designed and would result in outcomes that would be indefensible to their constituents back home in their districts.
It is also completely ludicrous to think that any Democrats would support the Republican plan.
However, there are questions about the ACA’s future. These questions surround funding of the subsidies, which are provided through budgetary measures. Will the House and Senate collectively decide not to fund the subsidies? Is that how they will “kill” the ACA?
Only time will tell.