Berks lawmakers react to CBO report on health care plan

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Illinois Democratic U.S. Senator Dick Durbin is reacting to the latest Congressional Budget Office analysis of the Republican plan to replace Obamacare.

This week the Congressional Budget Office released its analysis of the Republican health care bill known as American Health Care Act.

A nonpartisan analysis of the House-passed Republican bill said the potential consequences could be severe.

"This really is about the federal government saving money - cutting the money that they give to states for care, and then taking that money and turning around and providing a tax break to very high income people, the insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies", he states. Democrats have slammed Republicans for writing their bill behind closed doors and for not moving through the typical committee process in the Senate.

He maintained the House bill - the American Health Care Act - just isn't good enough, CNN said. "And all of this - the higher costs and reduced protections for families - are done in order to finance a massive tax cut for the wealthiest".

"We have to, if you will, fulfill President Trump's campaign promise", Sen.

The House's bill would reduce the federal budget deficit by $119 billion over 10 years, the CBO said.

Democrats blasted the bill and said the CBO report proved it would be catastrophic for millions of people who would lose health insurance.

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Prior to the changes, the CBO estimated that the bill would result in savings of $150 billion over the next decade and grow the number of uninsured Americans by 24 million. On Thursday, the CBO released its updated numbers - predicting lower insurance bills for some people, but new difficulties for low-income people trying to obtain coverage. The second would let states stop charging people with preexisting conditions who have let their insurance lapse at the same rate as healthy people.

But Republicans dismissed the CBO report, saying it does not take into account improvements at the state level that will offset the cuts under their bill and noting that the CBO has been wrong before in its predictions about Obamacare.

The bill would also repeal almost all the taxes imposed in the ACA to pay for the new benefits, including taxes on wealthy individuals and much of the health industry.

For ill people in those states, "it would become more difficult" for seriously ill people to buy insurance "because their premiums would continue to increase rapidly", the report said.

"Under the act, premiums for older people could be five times larger than those for younger people in many states, but the size of the tax credits for older people would be only twice the size of the credits for younger people", the report says.

"While I am in favour of repealing Obamacare, I am opposed to the American Health Care Act in its current form", Republican Senator Dean Heller said in a statement. Maternity coverage would be squarely in the targets of states that did not previously require it, simply because it's so expensive to provide - the average cost is about $17,000 a year, or more than $1,400 a month, for women with private insurance coverage, the CBO said. "For the thousands of people across the country who rely on Medicaid for long-term care, there are no other viable options to pay for their care".

"There is still much work to be done, but the AHCA is a step towards providing Americans the freedom to choose health plans that are right for them at a cost they can afford, not plans forced on them by Washington bureaucrats", he added.

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