Serious Efforts To Repeal Obamacare Expected In 2017

Date: December 27, 2016

GOP Planning Ways To Trim Obamacare Benefits, But Some Taxes May Remain In Place

 

Repealing Obamacare is likely to be one of the top legislative priorities of the new Congress and White House in 2017. With that in mind, Bloomberg Politics cited GOP congressional aides as indicating “Republican lawmakers are exploring” how President-elect Trump’s Administration “can quickly trim required health insurance benefits under the law and lower the cost of health plans.” HHS Secretary-designate Rep. Tom Price has reportedly prioritized the elimination of “essential health benefits and other requirements under the law.” However, citing “lobbyists familiar with the discussions,” The Hill reported that Republicans on the House Ways and Means Committee “are considering holding off on repealing some of ObamaCare’s taxes.” The Hill stressed, however, that even if the taxes are not eliminated as part of the repeal measure, “it does not necessarily mean they will remain indefinitely.” Some of the taxes “could be dealt with as part of a larger tax reform bill later in the year.” Nonetheless, it is possible that “some taxes could remain in place to provide revenue for a replacement healthcare measure.”

What Happens Next

The logistics and details of repealing Obamacare, and the timeframe for doing so, aren’t fully known at this point. McClatchy reported that while Republicans are “determined” to quickly repeal Obamacare, “consumers may not notice any difference in their health care coverage for a long time” because while eliminating the law “should be fairly easy,” the “harder task is replacing it, and ‘the eventual result will take several years,’” according to Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee Chairman Sen. Lamar Alexander.

What This Means For Small Businesses

Small businesses have suffered greatly under this burdensome health insurance mandate, as they’ve seen health care costs and government red tape rise while benefits associated with health insurance coverage shrink. News that Congress and the Trump Administration plan to focus on repealing Obamacare in 2017 is encouraging for small business owners.

Additional Reading

USA Today previously examined what the effect of a drawn-out Obamacare repeal process might be for state health care policy.

Note: this article is intended to keep small business owners up on the latest news. It does not necessarily represent the policy stances of NFIB.

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