Society

Bipartisan Group Presents Health Care Plan

| by Jordan Smith
Trump speaks with aideTrump speaks with aide

A coalition of bipartisan health experts has released a plan to make changes to Obamacare and intends to present it to Congress as a blueprint.

The group, whose founders include the liberal health care lobby organization Families USA and a Republican from Project Hope, encouraged the government to continue paying cost-sharing subsidies to insurance companies. The subsidies are designed to help low-income individuals access health care.

The coalition also urges the government to continue to press individuals to purchase health care, either by retaining Obamacare's individual mandate or finding another method.

A four-page document was released, but the group said on Aug. 9 that agreement has yet to be reached on all areas.

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One thing they do agree on is that the government must find ways to bring health care plans to counties that currently have none available on the Obamacare marketplace.

"We are trying to model bipartisanship so incremental steps can be taken," Ron Pollack of Families USA said, according to the Post.

Lahee Chen, a researcher at Stanford University, noted that work had to be done on engaging the Trump administration.

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"We are just getting started on that front," Chen added.

The proposal came as the leading Senate Republican traded barbs with President Donald Trump over health care policy.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell remarked that Trump had "excessive expectations" of the legislative process.

"So part of the reason I think people think we're underperforming is because too many kind of artificial deadlines unrelated to the reality of the complexity of legislating may not been fully understood," McConnell added Aug. 7, according to CBS News.

"Senator Mitch McConnell said I had 'excessive expectations,' but I don't think so," Trump responded in a tweet. "After 7 years of hearing Repeal & Replace, why not done?"

Dan Scavino, a Trump aide, also criticized McConnell, stating that he maybe needed "another 4 years -- in addition to the 7 years" to overturn Obamacare.

Congress will not conduct business until September, but Republicans are not getting a break from the health care debate during the August recess. Several members of Congress, including Rep. Doug LaMalfa, are holding town halls in their districts on the issue.

According to the Post, LaMalfa faced boos and catcalls from a crowd of around 400 at the Aug. 7 meeting.

"I think that your vote to throw 22 million people off of health care is reprehensible and in the service of the rich," a resident told LaMalfa.

Sources: Washington Post (2), CBS News / Featured Image: Benjamin Applebaum/Whitehouse.gov / Embedded Images: Gage Skidmore/Wikimedia Commons, The White House/Flickr via Wikimedia Commons

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