Industry Perspective
How the Country Responded to the Senate’s Better Care Reconciliation Act
Posted on Jun 23, 2017

On Thursday, June 22, the Senate released the Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017. We are tracking the reaction from current and former administrators and regulators from both sides of the aisle. Below is a snapshot of responses and tweets from Republican and Democratic representatives and other industry influencers from around the country.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (Kentucky)

“#Obamacare has been a disaster from day one. It's time that Americans received #BetterCare.”

“Americans have been through enough with the failing status quo of #Obamacare. It's time families get #BetterCare.”

“We will expand tax-free health savings accounts and deploy targeted tax credits, so we can help defray out-of-pocket costs. #BetterCare”

“We agree on strengthening #Medicaid, preserving access to care w preex conditions, & letting kids stay on parents’ health insurance until 26.”

“With our new #healthcare solutions, we'll stabilize insurance markets that are collapsing under #Obamacare too. It's time for #BetterCare.”

“With #BetterCare, we'll repeal the employer mandate, so Americans no longer see their hours & take-home pay cut by employers b/c of it.”

“With our new health care solutions, we will improve the affordability of health insurance. #BetterCare”

“We will repeal the individual mandate, so Americans are no longer forced to buy insurance they don’t need or can’t afford. #BetterCare”

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (New York)

“President Trump called the House Republican health care repeal bill ‘mean’ and said that the senate version should ‘have heart.’ Senate Republicans have published their plan and it’s not just ‘mean,’ it’s meaner. It doesn’t ‘have heart.” It’s heartless.”

“Please don’t call this an open and fair process. If you want to rush it through, admit the consequences.”

“This morning the @SenateGOP released their #HealthcareBill - it proves #Trumpcare won't put Americans' health first.”

“We live in the wealthiest country on Earth; surely we can do better than what the Republican #healthcarebill promises.”

“If you are pregnant & need maternity care, your plan may have decided it’s too expensive under #Trumpcare.”

“If you need treatment for opioid addiction, your plan may no longer cover it under #Trumpcare.”

“Frankly, every senior in America should read the fine print of this #Trumpcare bill; it looks like American seniors could be paying WAY more.”

“This #Trumpcare bill strips away protections from the ppl who need them most in order to give a tax break to those who need it least.”

Sen. Rand Paul (Kentucky)

“Currently, for a variety of reasons, we are not ready to vote for this bill, but we are open to negotiation and obtaining more information before it is brought to the floor. There are provisions in this draft that represent an improvement to our current health care system, but it does not appear this draft as written will accomplish the most important promise that we made to Americans: to repeal Obamacare and lower their health care costs.”

“I will oppose the #healthcarebill coming to the floor in its current form, but I remain open to negotiations.”

“The current #healthcarebill does not repeal Obamacare. It does not keep our promises to the American people.”

.@RandPaul tells @FoxNews on #GOP #HealthcareBill " It doesn't even sound like ObamaCare-Lite, in some areas it may even be ObamaCare-Plus"

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (Massachusetts)

“I’ve read the Republican “health care” bill. This is blood money. They’re paying for tax cuts with American lives.”

Sen. Lisa Murkowski (Alaska)

“Now that we have full text of the Senate’s bill, I will do my due diligence and thoroughly review it. I will be working closely with the state over the next several days to analyze the text and crunch the numbers. It’s no secret that healthcare needs to be reformed, but it needs to be done right. So know that I remain committed to ensuring that all Alaskans will have access to affordable, quality healthcare and will vet this bill through that lens.”

Sen. Dean Heller (Nevada)

“I cannot support a piece of legislation that takes away insurance from tens of millions of Americans and hundreds of thousands of Nevadans.”

Secretary of Health and Human Services Tom Price, M.D.

“Doctors, patients, small business owners, and Americans from all walks of life have been crushed by #Obamacare. We have heard your voices.”

“The Senate’s proposal is built on patient-centered reforms that put the American people back in charge of their own healthcare decisions.”

“What you’re seeing is a movement now toward a system that will allow patients and families and doctors to make decisions.”

CMS Administrator Seema Verma

“I appreciate the work of the Senate as they continue to make progress fixing the crisis in healthcare that has resulted from Obamacare. Skyrocketing premiums, rising costs and fewer choices have caused too many Americans to drop their insurance coverage. Today, Obamacare is in a death spiral and millions of Americans are being negatively impacted as a result. They are trapped by mandates that force them to purchase insurance they don’t want and can’t afford.”

“The Senate proposal is built on putting patients first and in charge of their healthcare decisions, bringing down the cost of coverage and expanding choices. Congress must act now to achieve the President's goal to make sure all Americans have access to quality, affordable coverage.”

Former CMS Administrator Andy Slavitt

“The Senate discussion bill is out. It's the ugly step-sibling of the House bill.”

“Trumpcare causes 20 million+ to lose coverage. 1 in 5 who gained coverage in exchanges were small biz owners or independent contractors.” 

“I'm talking 2 hundreds of small biz owners now about the impact of the AHCA on them. It's not good for the economy, small biz or families.”

“A sample of how the world reacted to the Senate health bill. "Devastating" & it "fails children." We must start over. It's too important.”

“The entire next week will be about amendments 2 make the bill "better." Better than this? Than the House bill? We need better for America.”

Former President Barack Obama
“The Senate bill, unveiled today, is not a health care bill. It’s a massive transfer of wealth from middle-class and poor families to the richest people in America. It hands enormous tax cuts to the rich and to the drug and insurance industries, paid for by cutting health care for everybody else. Those with private insurance will experience higher premiums and higher deductibles, with lower tax credits to help working families cover the costs, even as their plans might no longer cover pregnancy, mental health care, or expensive prescriptions. Discrimination based on pre-existing conditions could become the norm again. Millions of families will lose coverage entirely.

“Simply put, if there’s a chance you might get sick, get old, or start a family – this bill will do you harm. And small tweaks over the course of the next couple weeks, under the guise of making these bills easier to stomach, cannot change the fundamental meanness at the core of this legislation.”

Senior VP, Kaiser Family Foundation Larry Levitt

“In broad strokes, the Senate bill is just like the House: Big tax cuts, big cut in federal health spending, big increase in the uninsured.”

“Under the ACA, low-income people get cost-sharing subsidies that substantially reduce deductibles. Those are repealed in the Senate bill.”

“The Senate bill would likely keep the insurance market stable in the short-term, but the long-term is much more questionable.”

“The Senate bill funds cost-sharing subsidies through 2019. But then it eliminates them beginning in 2020, meaning higher deductibles.”

“Not surprisingly, the Senate bill repeals the individual mandate penalty. That increases premiums and the number of people uninsured.”