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Republicans revise healthcare bill for the benefit of old Americans

20 March 2017, 02:08 | Melvin Schneider

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Ron Powers a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and media critic wrote Flags of our Fathers which was adapted into a film by Clint Eastwood

The top Republican in Congress told "Fox News Sunday" that leaders seek to address concerns of rank-and-file Republicans to the legislation.

That they will "most likely" pass the necessary threshold of 216 votes by Thursday, Ryan said, is thanks in large part to President Trump's dealmaking.

"We think that we should be offering even more assistance than what the bill now does", he said.

"We feel like we're on track", Ryan said, "and we're right where we want to be".

Price said that would "place vulnerable people at risk".

Meanwhile, the president said he had meetings about healthcare reform in Florida during the weekend.

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"We have a president who is rolling up his sleeves". "They call it repeal and replace, but when it doesn't fix the problems and you say you've fixed the problems, they're going to own it".

The nonpartisan CBO estimated that 14 million Americans could lose their insurance next year under the Republican's Obamacare-replacement plan, a dire picture for Republicans of the bill's effects heading into the 2018 congressional elections. Trump's plan, for instance, would cut $5.8 billion from the National Institutes of Health, an 18 percent drop for the $32 billion agency that funds much of the nation's research into what causes different diseases and what it will take to treat them. "But we're not for, when you get sick, the taxpayer takes over the tab for the insurance company", Paul said. "We're for empowering the consumer to drive prices down so you can get better-cost insurance", the Kentucky Republican said. A gloating Paul Ryan shows us less pages, less coverage for the elderly, insurers will be allowed to charge older patients more. A Congressional Budget Office review of the bill released on March 13 suggested there would be increases in out-of-pocket costs, especially for older people.

That, according to the Congressional Budget Office estimate, leads to substantial cost savings that - together with cuts to Medicaid - allow the GOP plan to eliminate almost all of the taxes imposed under the Affordable Care Act.

House Speaker Paul Ryan appeared to bow to pressure from seniors groups on Sunday, admitting for the first time that his healthcare bill didn't do enough for those in their 60s and would have to be revised to give them more help.

On Sunday, Ryan said that portion of the analysis was not accurate, arguing that the Affordable Care Act wouldn't be able to last 10 years.

Separately, Ryan said he also expected the House to make changes to Trump's proposed budget, which calls for a boost to military spending but big-time cuts in domestic programs. "We are encouraged that we're seeing an increase in defense because we think our military has been hollowed out. So that is something that I think in Congress you'll see probably some changes".



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