Ryan says Trump is key to Obamacare repeal

Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee D-Texas opposes the Republican health care bill during work by the House Budget Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington Thursday March 16 2017

Politically speaking, one of the most glaring problems with the American Health Care Act, the Republican Party's proposed Obamacare replacement bill, is that its Medicare cuts and changes to insurance regulations would hammer older, rural, working-class Americans-a.k.a. the group that you might call Donald Trump's "base".

The Wisconsin Republican says "we believe we should offer more assistance than what the bill now does" and that it's one of several possible revisions to help round up enough House votes for the bill.

Last Friday, the White House won support from conservative Republican Study Committee (RSC) leaders by agreeing to give states the option to impose work requirements on Medicaid recipients and to block grant Medicaid instead of the cap system in the bill. And at least 13 House Republicans have said they will oppose the bill.

"I think there's enough conservatives that do not want 'ObamaCare lite, ' " Paul said on ABC's "This Week". The horse-trading appeared to accelerate on Wednesday, as Republicans continued to litigate the bill's details in back rooms and in the press, but it remains unclear whether it is possible for any final product to pass both the more conservative House and the comparatively moderate Senate. "I watch, and I say that's not the bill we're passing". I committed to President Trump that I would support this plan if it contains the changes we agreed to today.

Despite carping from conservatives who say Mr. Trump is being led astray by Mr. Ryan, the speaker said they're working well together. And Trump has been told that two separate amendments will add in some of his more popular proposals, such as allowing purchasing of plans across state lines.

Under Obamacare, insurers can charge only three times more.

He emphasized that until the bill is on the floor for a vote, "we are always making improvements".

"It's a fine needle that needs to be threaded", Price said.

But Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), who has worked closely with the hard-right bloc in the House, said on "This Week" that the bill was still short of a majority. But it does not rise and fall, like the ACA's subsidies, so a person pays only a fixed percentage of their income on their health insurance premiums.

The Speaker said Republicans made a promise to the American people to "repeal and replace this faulty collapsing law".

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