Rep. Tom Price (R-GA) is denying reports that Republicans have abandoned efforts to replace the Affordable Care Act, telling Newsmax.TV that House Republicans are still focused on developing GOP alternatives to reform and will introduce health care legislation “in the next couple of weeks”:
PRICE: Our replace process is moving forward, we’re having hearings at all sorts of different committee levels. [...] We’re working in our office right now on a new version of the Empower Patients First Act, which will get folks covered, solve the insurance challenges, and address the lawsuit abuse issues that we hope to introduce in the next couple of weeks.
HOST: Representative, well Politico says that six months later Republicans hardly mention it any more and there are nowhere close to replacing the law. Is that an inaccurate report?
PRICE: Well, I think that is an inaccurate report. I think all of the wind and enthusiasm is being sucked up by the deficit ceiling debate. No, we’re working diligently on the committee level…and we will continue to push for the kinds of appropriate reforms…we’ll continue to highlight it and look forward to putting in place patient-centered reforms.
Watch it starting around 4:00:
Price may soon re-introduce his replacement legislation, but as Jen Haberkorn reported in the Politico piece that Price is now describing as inaccurate, the leadership has relatively little appetite for re-opening the health care debate in the wake of the political debacle over Paul Ryan’s budget. And that conversation is even harder to have as Americans are already enjoying some of the most popular elements of reform — the very same provisions that many Republicans endorse and would keep in place.