KHN Morning Briefing

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‘Repeal And Chaos’: Burwell Warns Democrats About Dangers Of GOP’s Plans

The head of HHS spoke with lawmakers about the chaos that will come from repeal efforts, and urged them to find ways to fight back. Meanwhile, CMS's acting administrator sings a similar tune in an interview with Chicago Tribune.

The Hill: Obama Health Chief Huddles With Dems To Fight ObamaCare Repeal 
Secretary of Health and Human Services Sylvia Mathews Burwell met with congressional Democrats on Thursday to warn of the dangers of the Republican “repeal and delay” strategy for ObamaCare and discuss ways to fight back against repeal efforts. Burwell met with House Democrats in the morning and then Senate Democrats at their lunch in the afternoon. (Sullivan, 12/8)

Morning Consult: HHS Chief Warns Senate Democrats Of ‘Chaos’ Under ACA Repeal
The nation’s top health official spoke with Senate Democrats Thursday about the repeal of the Affordable Care Act, warning that undoing the law without having a replacement ready could be disastrous. “It’s very important to understand that a repeal and delay of a replacement is a situation where it is basically repeal and chaos,” Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell told reporters after meeting with lawmakers. (McIntire, 12/8)

CQ Roll Call: Burwell Warns Senators That Chaos Would Follow Obamacare Repeal
Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell privately rallied Senate Democrats on Thursday to warn the public about the dangers facing the U.S insurance market if Congress were to dismantle President Barack Obama’s 2010 health care law without implementing a replacement. “We talked about repeal and chaos,” Senate Minority Whip Richard J. Durbin of Illinois told reporters as he exited the meeting in the Capitol. The discussion focused on the potential detrimental impact both to insurers and consumers if lawmakers were to repeal the health care overhaul (Williams, 12/8)

Chicago Tribune: Medicare, Medicaid Head Says Repealing Obamacare Without Replacement Would Be 'Chaos'
[Andy] Slavitt, acting administrator at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, sat down with the Chicago Tribune Wednesday to discuss how the new administration's plans might affect consumers, where he'd like to see health care go in the future, and what he doesn't want to see. ... [Slavitt said,] We all ought to take a little bit of a deep breath and recognize there's a difference between what you have to say on the campaign trail and what you have to do when you're actually governing and when you're elected. I think we should give the new administration every opportunity and all the information they need to come to the decisions that are best for the country. (Schencker, 12/8)

And the timing of it all is still up in the air —

The Hill: Dems See ’18 Upside In ObamaCare Repeal
Democrats are hoping to turn the tables on ObamaCare for the 2018 midterm elections, exacting political revenge as the Republican Party turns its focus to repealing and replacing the program. The GOP successfully used the healthcare law to take control of the House from Democrats in 2010, framing the policy as a government takeover that would raise taxes. With ObamaCare’s repeal on the horizon, Democrats hope to make the process just as painful for Republicans, pointing to the 20 million people currently covered by the exchanges whose insurance could be at risk.  (Kamisar, 12/8)

Morning Consult: Price, Ryan Say Length Of Obamacare Transition Still Undetermined
The transition timeline is one of the biggest questions about the budget resolution. A reconciliation bill that was vetoed by President Barack Obama earlier this year would have allowed for two years to pass a replacement plan. But some GOP members want a replacement to happen faster, while others are pushing for three years. (McIntire, 12/8)

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