House Republicans have long promised to “repeal and replace” the Affordable Care Act, but their actual plan to replace the 2010 health care reform law, which the Supreme Court upheld on Thursday, has been uncertain. Some members want to preserve aspects of the law, while others have urged for a full repeal.
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) announced shortly after the court’s ruling that the House will vote to repeal Obamacare on July 11. As far as what replaces it, he told Tom Brokaw on MSNBC’s Morning Joe that the GOP’s 2009 health care plan is their alternative to President Obama’s health law:
CANTOR: Tom, you knew back in 2009 when the Obamacare bill was being considered on the House floor, we put forward our alternative. So to sit here and say we don’t have a replacement is not correct. What we have now, though, is the challenge of repealing this law.
Watch his comments:
Of course, as ThinkProgress reported in 2009, the plan Cantor mentions is the one that would have shifted the costs and risks of insurance onto individuals and divided the market into low-cost plans for the healthy and high-cost insurance for the sick. The 230-page Obamacare alternative would have done very little to expand access to health care or lower costs. When the Congressional Budget Office compared the GOP plan to the Affordable Care Act in 2009, the CBO found that the Republican proposal would leave 52 million people uninsured and add $8 billion to the deficit, even though a spokesperson for then-House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) falsely claimed their alternative “will cover millions more Americans” than the Democrats’ bill.
Compared to the roughly 30 million who will have insurance under Obamacare, it’s hard to see how Cantor’s replacement plan would help make health care more patient-focused while leaving so many without access to care.