Congress Gears Up For Big Week In Health Care Following Easter Recess

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Juliegrace Brufke Capitol Hill Reporter
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Members of Congress are anticipating a busy week upon return from their two-week Easter recess, with many hoping the House Obamacare repeal bill will be brought to the floor for a vote.

GOP lawmakers said they expect to see changes to the text no later than the end of the weekend. Significant changes are expected to be made from the legislation leadership pulled from the floor in March due to the lack of support from both conservatives and moderates. Following the political blunder, the administration opted to renew its efforts to assist in the negotiation process. GOP leaders in the House have largely taken a backseat approach since their initial attempt, instead allowing conservative members of the House Freedom Caucus and moderates in the Tuesday Group work on a deal they can all support.

Conservatives have been advocating for a number of the Affordable Care Act’s Title I regulations to be removed, while moderates have expressed concerns over repealing certain parts of the bill, saying it could lead to some losing care. Top members of the different factions of the conference — with the help of Vice President Mike Pence, Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney and White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus — appear to have come to an agreement most feel comfortable with.

According to Virginia Rep. Dave Brat, a member of the House Freedom Caucus, a vote will like take place next week or the following.

“I mean you know we’re hopeful it’s just the Vice President Mike Pence compromise and so we’re just waiting on the text,” he told The Daily Caller News Foundation. “We’ve seen bullets come out, you know, from the major groups involved, and the bullets look right — it basically involves assuring people about preexisting conditions and then also allowing states to opt out of some of the insurance regulations.”

Brat said the waivers are a step in the right direction, noting the House Freedom Caucus has never been against ensuring those with preexisting conditions remain covered.

“We’re at least cracking the door open to clean up the swamp a little bit,” he said.

While Republicans are closer to coming to a consensus, it is still unclear whether leadership has to votes for a revised version to pass.

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