The U.S. Senate recently approved a bill that would repeal the majority of the ACA in a vote of 52 to 47. If approved at the House of Representatives, the bill will be sent to President Obama who is expected to veto it. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., called the repeal a victory for middle class families on their medical choices and on affordability of care as well as, "on the insurance they liked and wanted to keep... We will vote to build a bridge away from Obamacare and toward better care." Democrat and Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid criticized the repeal attempt, "Every day the Republican Leader comes to the floor and rails against Obamacare. And yet, more than ten percent of his constituents are benefiting from the Affordable Care Act.”
The new measure would take authority away from the federal government in running healthcare exchanges and get rid of subsidies that are helping people afford healthcare plans. On a positive side, it would take away the penalties on individuals who do not buy insurance and on employers who do not offer health insurance. Further, it would reduce the threshold of healthcare costs that can be deducted from 10% to 7.5% of AGI. Additionally, the bill would repeal the over-the-counter medicine tax, the prescription drug tax, and an annual fee on health insurers. Lastly, on a controversial note, the bill would defund Planned Parenthood, but it seems unlikely that the bill will succeed, at least until a new President is sworn into the White House.
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