Growing Number of Senate Republicans Oppose ACA “Repeal and Delay” Strategy
A growing number of Senate Republicans have voiced opposition to the “repeal and delay” strategy for changing the Affordable Care Act. A group of five Senators wants to give Congress more time to formulate an ACA replacement plan, as outlined in an amendment introduced on Monday. The amendment reflects continuing disagreement within the Congressional majority on a path forward, creating an opening for more advocates to weigh in with their views.
Five GOP Senators signed on to the amendment: Senators Bob Corker (R-TN), Rob Portman (R-OH), Susan Collins (R-ME), Bill Cassidy (R-LA), and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK). On Thursday, Senator Corker withdrew the amendment after receiving assurance from Senate leadership that the current replacement deadline of January 27 is nonbinding.
BUDGET RECONCILIATION CONTINUES
Congress has taken the first step towards repeal of the ACA with the Senate’s passage of a non-binding budget resolution on Thursday. Earlier this week, the Senate held a series of votes on amendments to the budget resolution. Immediately following the “vote-a-rama”, the budget resolution was approved along party lines. The resolution now heads to the House where it is expected to be taken up on Friday, January 13.
This vote is just the start of what is expected to be a months-long debate on the repeal and possible replacement of the ACA. With Republicans still divided on a singular path forward, advocates in the behavioral health community have the opportunity to influence the process and potentially delay or stop cuts to behavioral health services.
We are requesting all National Council members act NOW to protect consumers’ access to care. Over the next few months, the National Council will be calling on advocates repeatedly to make their voices heard. Visit the Act NOW page every week to participate in the latest call to action. NOW is the time for everyone in the behavioral health community to speak out!