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Categorized | Podcasts

Capital Thinking Podcast

Last week, the House voted on the “Repealing the Job-Killing Health Care Law Act” (H.R. 2). The final vote on the bill was 245-189, with three Democrats – Reps. Dan Boren (OK), Mike McIntyre (NC), and Mike Ross (AR) – voting with the Republicans in favor of repeal. At this time, the Senate has no plans to take up consideration of the bill, which would be unlikely to pass and would almost certainly face a Presidential veto if it were to move successfully.

The House also took up and also passed H.Res. 9, instructing House Committees to recommend measures to replace the reform law. Specifically, the Resolution directs Committees to “proposing changes to existing law” that address many of their chief concerns with the health law including: provisions that spur economic growth and create jobs; lower health premiums; preserve patients’ ability to keep their health plan; provide people with pre-existing conditions access to coverage; reform medical malpractice; increase the number of insured; protect the doctor-patient relationship; provide States with more Medicaid flexibility; expand personal responsibility; prohibit taxpayer funding of abortions; eliminate waste; and do not accelerate the insolvency of entitlement programs. Along with the Resolution, the House adopted an amendment instructing lawmakers to permanently fix the Medicare physician payment formula.

The Committees will turn their attention this week to oversight hearings. The Ways and Means Committee will convene a hearing on Wednesday examining the economic and regulatory burdens resulting from the enactment and implementation of Affordable Care Act. Specifically, the Committee will consider the law’s impact on jobs stemming from the new taxes and new federal regulatory requirements and the impact of the employer mandate on job creation. The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee will hold a hearing on Thursday to discuss the impact of health care reform on consumers. Last week, the House Energy and Commerce Committee announced an investigation into the Office of Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight waiver process that House Republicans believe shield some entities from parts of the health care reform law. These activities foretell House Republicans’ clear focus on oversight of the Affordable Care Act during the 112th Congress.