Today, the House of Representatives voted to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act in a narrow, party-line vote. Here's Vox:
Republicans largely managed to get the bill over the finish line by offering up assurances that it would do things that health care experts say it fundamentally would not, like ensuring coverage for people with preexisting conditions, lowering premiums, and allowing people to maintain their existing coverage. None of these things are true.
Instead, the plan changes key pieces of the Affordable Care Act, allowing states to opt out of provisions that required insurance companies to cover “essential health benefits” and charge everyone the same regardless of their health history.
Don't panic. Yet. The bill still has to make it through the Senate, where it'll likely face the issues it did in the House—namely, that it's not extreme enough to please hard-line Republicans, and that it's a nonstarter for Republicans from districts where people rely on the Affordable Care Act for, you know, staying alive.
If you're interested in reading up on some of the objections to this bill, your Senator Ron Wyden took to Twitter with an explainer today:
House is dangerously close to passing their “replacement” for the ACA. And they are doing it by lying about what it does.
Here’s the facts:
— Ron Wyden (@RonWyden) May 3, 2017
Also worth noting: The Republicans had such a hard time passing this bill that multiple outlets are reporting that some House members hadn't even read the bill as late as Wednesday night. One of the major problems with this new, worse AHCA is that it leaves open the possibility that folks with preexisting conditions could be slapped with higher insurance premiums or denied coverage altogether. That's the exact opposite of what was a popular component of Obamacare, and it spells trouble for already-vulnerable populations, including the elderly, people with chronic illnesses, and (surprise) women.
As if this all weren't bad enough, the bill's passage arrives the same day as the "president's" executive order to weaken the divide between church and state, and shortly after indications that the Trump administration plans to undermine patient protections for transgender people.
There's, like, a modicum of good news here: Twenty Republicans voted against the AHCA. I can only assume that they'll be the ones keeping their seats.