Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) has issued a list of policy proposals that he would like to see added to the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA), in order to garner his support for the sweeping health care reform bill.
In a letter addressed to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and copied to President Donald Trump, President pro tempore Orrin Hatch (R-UT), Senate Budget Committee Chair Mike Enzi (R-WY) and Senate HELP Committee Chair Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Paul lays out four possible amendments to the present legislation that would increase the likelihood of him backing the bill.
The first is permitting association health plans, which would enable individuals to pool funds in order to purchase health insurance.
The second is reducing the $136 billion in funding in the bill for insurance company bailouts so that the taxpayer is not held responsible for any losses made by the insurers.
The third is removing the BCRA’s proposal to expand premium tax credits, expensive entitlements that waste taxpayer funds.
The fourth is revoking the continuous coverage requirement, a provision that functions in a similar way to the individual mandate.
The BCRA is the Senate’s version of the House’s American Health Care Act (AHCA), which aims to repeal and replace Obamacare. It has come under fire from fiscal conservatives who are concerned that the legislation does not go far enough in repealing Obamacare and risks making the situation even worse, resulting in electoral repercussions for the Republicans. Paul is one of four conservative Senators currently withholding support for the BCRA, although President Trump has made it clear that he wants Paul’s support for the controversial reform bill, and negotiations between the two men are ongoing.