Former House Speaker John Boehner says Obamacare isn’t going away anytime soon. Speaking at a healthcare conference in Orlando, he predicted that a full repeal and replace of the Affordable Care Act is “not what’s going to happen.” Instead, he said Republicans will just make a few tweaks here and there to “fix” the law.
“They’ll fix Obamacare, and I shouldn’t have called it repeal and replace because that’s not what’s going to happen. They’re basically going to fix the flaws and put a more conservative box around it,” Boehner said.
According to Boehner, who stepped down in 2015, the majority of the important protections provided by Obamacare will remain in place. The changes, he explained, will involve letting the states decide for themselves how they would like to run things.
“Most of the Affordable Care Act, in the framework, is going to stay there: coverage for kids up to age 26, covering those with preexisting conditions. All of that’s going to be there. Subsidies for those who can’t afford it, who aren’t on Medicaid, who I call the working poor, subsidies for them will be there,” Boehner said.
“What will be different is that CMS will not dictate to every single state how the plan’s going to run. And if the state wants to run an exchange, the state can run an exchange. The states will control the policies that are offered like they control every other insurance product offered in their states,” he added.
Earlier in the discussion, Boehner said that he “started laughing” when Republicans first began talking about repealing and replacing the ACA because these are people that can’t ever manage to agree on anything.
“In the 25 years that I served in the United States Congress, Republicans never, ever, one time agreed on what a health care proposal should look like. Not once,” Boehner said. “And all this happy talk that went on in November and December and January about repeal, repeal, repeal—yeah, we’ll do replace, replace—I started laughing, because if you pass repeal without replace, first, anything that happens is your fault. You broke it.”
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