Aon Hewitt Washington Report Special Edition
July 20, 2017
Senate GOP Releases ACA "Repeal Now, Replace Later" Bill
On July 19, 2017, capping an extraordinary week in which the Senate GOP leadership saw its version of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) “repeal and replace” legislation suffer a series of party defections on a crucial procedural vote, the Senate GOP leadership released its latest attempt at health care reform.
The “Obamacare Repeal Reconciliation Act of 2017” (ORRA) is based on a repeal bill passed in 2015 by the House of Representatives and the Senate but vetoed by then-President Obama. ORRA would repeal various provisions of the ACA, but delay the effective date of repeal for two years, during which Congress would craft replacement legislation. Assuming the Senate votes to proceed to debate, a vote on a health care bill could occur next week.
However, a motion to proceed to debate on legislation requires at least 50 senators to vote in favor, with the Vice President breaking the tie. With only 52 Republican Senators (none of the 48 Democrats are expected to vote “yes”), three GOP defections would be enough to prevent any legislation from reaching the floor of the Senate. Despite the setbacks earlier this week, negotiations on the legislation are apparently proceeding.
The Aon Hewitt bulletin, which provides a brief overview of the ORRA and includes links to the bill text and CBO cost estimate, revisions, can be found here.