In 2010, Congress passed and President Obama signed a law that fundamentally altered how health insurance worked. It provided coverage to millions more people while making individual insurance markets function more smoothly.
But this policy had its problems. It required healthy individuals to purchase health insurance – an idea some conservatives find objectionable.
1. They don't have a plan.
For seven years, Republicans have promised to repeal Obamacare – yet never had an actual plan for doing so. While there were a few opportunities that made sense for them, there was also considerable political risk involved with trying to get it right.
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has weathered multiple Supreme Court challenges and boasts a high enrollment rate. Furthermore, it relies heavily on private insurance plans for millions of Americans to remain insured.
However, this law raises premiums and deters some healthy and young enrollees who would rather pay less for a more minimal policy.
Now that the Supreme Court is set to rule on whether or not the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is constitutional, Republican lawmakers are feeling pressure. Yet NBC News poll results indicate they do not yet have an alternative plan in place.
2. They don't have the votes.
For nearly seven years, Republicans have been working to repeal and replace Obamacare with their own system. Even with President Trump in office, however, they’re having difficulty reaching their goal.
One major reason is the Obamacare has gained overwhelming support among enrollees, who prefer it over the alternatives they’ve seen so far. For instance, Stacie Boschma is a freelance copywriter who purchases her insurance on the marketplace.
She pays $400 per month for a plan with a $5,000 deductible, which she finds to be too costly. Ideally, she and her spouse would like to find an affordable health plan.
On Wednesday, Senate Republicans failed to pass a “skinny” repeal bill with Senators Susan Collins of Maine and John McCain of Arizona voting against it. With only three senators supporting repeal legislation, there remains little chance for repealing Obamacare.
3. They don't have the ideas.
The Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, has made a huge difference in the lives of millions of Americans. It makes it possible for low-income individuals to receive government insurance coverage and provides coverage to those with preexisting medical conditions.
But Republicans and voters alike are becoming increasingly worried that their party doesn’t possess the ideas necessary to replace the law. Some lawmakers and governors have proposed repealing or weakening the act, while others have promised further changes.
Furthermore, the Affordable Care Act’s financial subsidies for premiums are insufficient to make insurance affordable for those unable to pay their bills. All but one Republican plan to replace Obamacare proposes significantly less generous financial support for low-income consumers.
In addition, most Republican replacement proposals call for repealing the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion to families below 138 percent of poverty level. They also advocate converting Medicaid into block grants for states and replacing tax credits with more limited non-income based deductions or Health Savings Accounts (HSAs).
4. They don't have the money.
In 2010, President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare. This law has enabled an increase in health insurance coverage and safeguards consumers against insurer tactics that may drive up costs or restrict care.
The law offers premium subsidies to help low-income Americans purchase health coverage. It also places strict limits on insurers, prohibiting them from dropping sick or expensive clients or charging more.
However, if President Trump and congressional Republicans repeal the entire Affordable Care Act (ACA), millions of people would lose these protections. Individual market health insurance markets could collapse; moreover, millions with pre-existing conditions could either lose their coverage or be denied it altogether.