GOP Exploring Options on Healthcare

Thursday, 17 May 2012 12:52 PM

By Dan Weil

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As they await the Supreme Court’s ruling on President Barack Obama’s healthcare reform law, expected in June, House Republican leaders are developing different strategies depending on how the court rules.

If the law is upheld in full, which most legal experts see as unlikely, Republicans are ready to repeal its most objectionable elements, such as the individual mandate to buy insurance and requirements that employers provide insurance or face fines, Politico reports.

If the court partly or fully rejects Obamacare, Republican legislators will offer bills to maintain popular elements of the plan. That includes allowing adult children to stay on their parents’ insurance plans until age 26 and requiring insurance companies to offer coverage to people with pre-existing conditions.

Boehner told the House Republican conference Wednesday that the party won’t follow the Democrats’ path of formulating one sweeping healthcare bill, but rather will take multiple small steps, sources present at the meeting told Politico.

“If all or part of the law is struck down, we are not going to repeat the Democrats’ mistakes,” he said, according to the sources. “We have better ideas on health care — lots of them. We have solutions, of course, for patients with pre-existing conditions and other challenges.”

But the House GOP leadership are likely to run afoul of conservatives among its rank-and-file who will accept nothing less than total repeal of Obamacare with nothing to replace it. “I don’t want any vestige of Obamacare left in law,” Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, told Politico. “Not one particle of DNA.”

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