WASHINGTON (AP) – Two Republican senators plan to propose legislation that lets states keep former President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul or opt for a new program providing trimmed-down coverage.
The plan by Sens. Bill Cassidy of Louisiana and Susan Collins of Maine would retreat from years of GOP cries to repeal Obama’s law and replace it with a still undefined Republican alternative. It comes as GOP lawmakers face pressure from President Donald Trump to quickly void and replace the health law and as Republicans continue hunting for a proposal that would unite them.
Cassidy tells reporters: “It has been a Republican principle that power is best held by individuals and states, not the federal government.”
Trump has said he wants to keep some of the Obama overhaul’s consumer protections, like requiring insurers to cover people with pre-existing medical problems. Collins and Cassidy say their bill preserves many of those.
But Trump and congressional GOP leaders have not suggested letting states retain the entire statute.