Republicans Just Got Good News on Their Health Care Bill

Two GOP representatives have switched to 'yes' votes
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted May 3, 2017 1:40 PM CDT
2 Republican Reps Switch to 'Yes' on GOP Health Care Bill
Rep. Billy Long, R-Mo., second from right, speaks to reporters outside the White House in Washington, Wednesday, May 3, 2017, following a meeting with President Donald Trump on health care reform. From left are, Rep. Michael Burgess, R-Texas, Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., and Rep. Greg Walden, R-Ore.   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Two Republican representatives who announced earlier this week they wouldn't support the GOP bill to repeal and replace ObamaCare have done a 180, giving new hope to the American Health Care Act, the Hill reports. Fred Upton of Michigan and Billy Long of Missouri switched to "yes" votes after meeting with President Trump on Wednesday and successfully adding an amendment to the AHCA. According to Politico, the amendment puts $8 billion in federal funding toward helping people with pre-existing conditions get insurance. "They need to be covered. Period," Long says he told Trump.

Upton says he thinks the AHCA now has enough votes to pass the House. With the addition of Upton's amendment, at least two other Republican representatives say they'll consider voting for the bill. There was some concern Upton's amendment would scare off the more conservative members of the House, but that doesn't appear to have been the case. Upton says a House vote on the AHCA is possible as soon as Thursday. CNBC reports one ObamaCare advocate says Upton's amendment won't actually do anything to help people with pre-existing conditions afford the increased cost of insurance under the AHCA; it amounts to an extra $62 for each American with a pre-existing condition. (More American Health Care Act stories.)

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