Why Georgia Republicans are nervous about House health plan

U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson, center, U.S. Rep. Doug Collins (back, left) and U.S. Rep. Tom Graves (back, center) at a rally in Marietta in November. Curtis Compton,ccompton@ajc.com

Georgia Republicans are sharply divided over the GOP proposal to replace the Affordable Care Act that’s galloping through the U.S. House of Representatives, raising concerns about the lack of a cost estimate for the overhaul and its impact on the state’s budget as it moves through Capitol Hill.

As House lawmakers prepare to vote on the sweeping rewrite of health care policy, at least two GOP congressmen from Georgia said they won’t support the measure in its current form. And Gov. Nathan Deal has raised concerns about how it will affect Georgia and other states that refused to expand Medicaid.

The fight over the plan is another stinging reminder of the challenges of making substantial changes to health policy even for Republicans who have long vowed to repeal the signature law of Barack Obama’s presidency.

 


 

Under pressure from President Donald Trump, who has endorsed the plan, House GOP leaders have signaled they would make only minor changes to the proposal. Democrats, health care industry groups and other critics, meanwhile, are eagerly fanning the flames of a budding revolt. Conservative groups aren’t happy either, taking issue with the bill’s refundable tax credits that they say are akin to a new federal entitlement.

Before the measure was introduced, Deal recounted a call with fellow Republicans governors who he said “took the bait” and expanded Medicaid with the promise that the federal government would pick up the bulk of the bill.

“I would remind Republican governors who expanded Medicaid — that was part of Obamacare,” said Deal. “And now it could very well go away. I am sympathetic to what they did, but we don’t want to be punished for what those states did.

More: Georgia Republicans are sharply divided over the House GOP’s healthcare plan

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38 comments
Jeri Henson Dies
Jeri Henson Dies

Republicans believe that if they keep spitting in our faces, we'll start to enjoy it.

Joanne Ward Lutes
Joanne Ward Lutes

People quite complaining and pray for these representatives of ours. They didn't create this mess but now have to clean it up. We have a national debt that is about to swallow us up and yet still have to figure out health care. What's the matter with you all?

Greg P Bates
Greg P Bates

The need to just get on with making all states participate. Tax the rich a little bit more and offer more subsidies for the working folks who are truly suffering.

Susan Barmon
Susan Barmon

I agree. There has always been a segment of society that will always need help and it is our responsibility, as humans, to have some grace and help them out whether they vote or not.

Greg P Bates
Greg P Bates

I don't hate welfare, I think it is our duty to take care of those in need.

Gwen Pickens
Gwen Pickens

As well they should be! They better take heed to their constituents, elections will be here before you know it!

Mimi DeArman Outlaw
Mimi DeArman Outlaw

They probably have trouble finding their hearts to put their hand over too. \U0001f921

Patricia Wyatt Colley
Patricia Wyatt Colley

Under Nathan Deal DFCS which handles medicaid has pretty much been decimated. Records are decentralized, workers are gone, customer service is non existent and many are being denied the benefits that they are eligible for simply because they cannot get through the system. And our medicaid policy is huge and extensive and ridiculous compared to say California's medcal. So we lost going into this battle. I was a medicaid worker at DFCS so trust me I know. And then Deal refused medicaid expansion which if you actually crunched the numbers would save the taxpayers money because people would not have to glut hospital emergency rooms, costing thousands more than necessary. I had to follow policy and deny a lot of deserving people for medicaid benefits, some who died and many who suffered. I once went to a legislative meet and greet with the DMA and legislators and I asked this woman who was representing DMA "don't they know people are dying" Her resonse:"they don't vote so they don't care" This was early 2000s prior to Deal. It has only gotten worse.

Issac Reid
Issac Reid

Look these old men need to retire to Florida

John Guzzardo
John Guzzardo

For the love of God no! My home state is finally waking up from the disaster called Rick Scott!!!

Issac Reid
Issac Reid

John Guzzardo I honestly don't realize what with that but I'm happy for you

Michael Helenek
Michael Helenek

They had 7+ years to work on a plan and they propose a Groupon Healthcare Plan where millions will lose coverage. They should be worried.

Tracy Martin
Tracy Martin

I remember when this picture was taken, I was there. Oh the horror.

Lila King
Lila King

all congressmen and women must be required to .use the same insurance as the public they put it on.

Rhonda Chambers
Rhonda Chambers

Just a simple case of when you have done it to the least of them, so have you done it unto God. God's vengeance is unstoppable.

Very_Disgusted
Very_Disgusted

OK, just a few things they need to be worried about:

Employers will no longer be required to provide health insurance, so you can bet many will drop it to increase their 'bottom line'.  Employees of those companies might not be very happy when they find they cannot afford individual policies.


The wealthy will get a huge tax break - sure they pay the most, but the obverse is that those who cannot afford healthcare insurance will get higher bills which they cannot afford.  One of the things that I learned in a civics class way back in the dark ages, is that one of the tenants of our republic is a progressive tax system.  That is unless those that have the big bucks can buy political positions and change the rules.  History has not been too kind on that type of behavior.  There are a LOT more folks in the 99%, and they may not feel motivated to vote for those that stick it to 'em.


Individual policies will become much more expensive for older folks prior to (what will be left of it) Medicare.  See what the seniors will think of that.


Insurance companies will be back in control - you know, the ones that like to deny coverage to increase their profits.  Of course, they will increase political donations, so maybe our politico's will like ;that!


So much for 'great insurance'.  I guess those great policies will be 'available to everyone' .... at an UNaffordable price.



Paul Gibson
Paul Gibson

Paul Leonard as this is phase 1. My daughter, a single working mother of two might finally have AFFORDABLE insurance. Some she didn't didn't have under the UN affordable care act. The IRS annual fine, about 2/3 months worth, as opposed to THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT.

Daniel Eason
Daniel Eason

Paul, if an insurance company is denying coverage of a medical condition because it was a pre-existing condition, then that insurance company is violating the law. It's that simple.

Paul Gibson
Paul Gibson

My grandson has a preexisting condition. Have known about since pre-birth no longer is covered. Isn't what Obama promised. Keep your doctor, it will cover all preexisting conditions? She's only about midway up the "lower" income scale. At minimum, their Is a plan that all citizens can read. Not something America was provided when Nancy Pelosi rolled out "you have to sgin it before you can read it.

Paul Gibson
Paul Gibson

Gee I think if a specialist Dr. Is not listed on the coverage package as promised you no longer have that specialized Doctor. You effectively don't have coverage.

Paul Leonard
Paul Leonard

I see you drank the kool-aid ... Do the homework . The new plan doesn't add up ... the elderly, lower income , and preexisting conditions are going to get cut out . Phase 1 ... what a laugh.

Daniel Eason
Daniel Eason

Paul, are you saying that your daughter does or doesn't have health insurance? You first seemed to claim she can't afford it, so that leaves us think she doesn't have it.

Detarvius Rossum
Detarvius Rossum

Ga went blue for Bill. And with all the film industry lefties putting down roots, we will see big changes here soon.

Ted Wetherby
Ted Wetherby

Imagine how many more hospital closing we will have they want to gut Medicaid. Yes block grant it and give it back to the sates, back to the states wtf is that its always been a federal program never a state program. They will give Medicaid to people but not enough to actually use it doctors won't except it the reimbursement's will be that low. All for tax breaks to the wealthy. Cutting the mandate yes they say its going to drop pricing and more people will buy in. If your not mandated to buy in now you will? BULLCHIT, more young healthy people will opt out cause lost insurance revenue where a large amount of the insured people in the pool ratio are sick causing pricing to skyrocket. Much of this will not take affect until after the 2018 election so when you see what a piece of chit it is they won't lose your vote.

Paul Leonard
Paul Leonard

And they should be . Alot of people are going to be without Health insurance here in Ga if this H/P goes through .