Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Mitch McConnell, Republican Majority Leader of the United States Senate announced late Tuesday night that the latest effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA), commonly called Obamacare, will not be put up to a vote because Republicans failed to muster enough support to pass the Graham-Cassidy Bill. This is the fourth time that the Republican Party has failed to repeal the ACA in the Senate.

Most Republican politicians would like to scrap the current healthcare legislation, which was passed in 2010, under Democratic President Barack Obama. One of President Donald Trump’s election promises was to gut Obamacare.

The United States, unlike many other developed countries, does not provide a national health care system to its people. Individuals are expected to buy insurance policies from private companies if their employer does not provide health insurance. In 2010, under President Barack Obama, federal legislation imposing minimum standards on private health insurance plans was passed for the first time in American history. The ACA also provides subsidies to help lower-income individuals purchase health insurance. Individuals request health care subsidies when filing their annual tax returns.

The Republican Party has vowed to repeal the ACA, claiming it is too expensive and inefficient. But millions of Americans helped by subsidies have come to rely on it and are terrified they will be left with no access to health care if it is repealed. Mike Pence, Vice President of the United States, warned last week that failure to pass the repeal legislation may leave the United States having a national health care system such as the one in Canada.