Politics

Iowa Senators Lower Expectations For Senate Health Care Bill

The Senate health care bill, which senators will begin drafting during this week’s recess, will not totally repeal Obamacare, according to two Iowa Senators.

“It’s not going to be torn up by the roots in one piece of legislation,” Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley said Tuesday after a congressional forum sponsored by the Altoona Area Chamber of Commerce, according to The Gazette. “It’s going to take two pieces of legislation to accomplish the goal.”

Republican Sen. Joni Ernst, explained that a total repeal of Obamacare would require 60 votes under Senate rules, leaving republicans eight votes short. As a result, Republicans will be forced to rely on the reconciliation process, which will allow them to “tinker around the edges” of Obamacare in an effort to stem the flow of insurance providers leaving Obamacare exchanges in Iowa.

“Iowa is on the cliff,” Ernst said, according to The Gazette. “We are the No. 1 state in the United States when it comes to losing providers. That’s not a statistic that we want, but, unfortunately, we are there.”

She expressed hope that the Senate would pursue an approach that allows private insurance companies greater flexibility in the plan options they offer while granting consumers more freedom to choose the plan that suits them best.

“Unfortunately, we’ve been handed a real big mess right with the ACA, and we can only do what the law will allow us to do through reconciliation,” said Ernst. “So, as much as I’d love to go back and scrap the whole darn thing, we’re simply not able to that at this moment, but we’ll continue to work on it and see can do to lower costs for everyone.”

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