The Senate on Thursday unveiled its version of the American Health Care Act, the bill that would repeal the Affordable Care Act and roll back Medicaid.
The Senate’s version of the bill, called the Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017, is very similar to the bill passed by the House. A few changes from the House bill of note: an even lower growth rate for Medicaid funding for states, pushing the end of the Medicaid expansion back four years, and lower the income threshold for eligibility of premium subsidies to about $42,000.
The legislation is one of monumental unpopularity on both sides of the aisle, and passed the House with difficulty after the Congressional Budget Office found that 23 million people would lose healthcare coverage.
The bill cuts spending and taxes—especially for the wealthiest families by repealing the surtax on investment income—but at a substantial cost, especially to older and low-income people. By 2024, the Medicaid expansion would be completely gone. The Senate’s bill also provides less funding for stabilization of high-risk pools, and by 2026 funding to stabilize would be gone.
The bill in all its forms has a massive number of detractors that extend past party lines, including four Republican senators as of Thursday afternoon, which may derail the legislation. Even President Donald Trump himself, who personally worked to whip the bill through the House, called the AHCA bill “mean.”
Combining the data from numerous national polls, analysis by the New York Times showed that Oklahoma is the state that supports the bill the most, and the support is at just 38% – with 45% of the population opposing it.