KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Capitol Hill Health Plan Fix Could Include Abortion Coverage

Access to abortion coverage is not offered to other federal employees who get health insurance through the government's plan. In other congressional news, more analysis of the possible budget battles that could occur over a threatened government shutdown and funds to implement the health law.

The Associated Press/Washington Post: Lawmakers, Staff May Gain Access To Abortion Coverage Under Health Law, While Other Feds Won't
It’s an issue lawmakers may not want to have to explain at town hall meetings back home: An attempt to fix a problem with the new health care law has created a situation in which members of Congress and their staffers could gain access to abortion coverage, something that currently is denied to federal employees who get health insurance through the government's plan (8/16).

The New York Times: Washington Memo: Puzzle Awaits The Capital: How To Solve 3 Fiscal Rifts
The showdown encompasses three interlocking fiscal disputes that will challenge Mr. Obama and his Republican interlocutors to bridge seemingly irreconcilable goals. Perhaps easiest to resolve is the effort by some conservative Republicans to eliminate financing for the new health care law in return for keeping the government open beyond Sept. 30, the end of the fiscal year. … A second challenge is determining the fate of the across-the-board budget cuts known as the sequester if Congress avoids a shutdown by extending government financing. … The third challenge may be the most worrisome. While the sequester pinches particular constituencies, and a government shutdown would inconvenience millions, economists warn that a default resulting from a failure to raise the government’s debt limit could tip the economy back into recession (Harwood, 8/15).

Politico: FreedomWorks Makes Big Anti-Obamacare Push
Conservatives are plotting an aggressive push during the last two weeks of August to boost the controversial effort in Congress to oppose spending bills this fall that contain funding for Obamacare. FreedomWorks is working with local conservative activists to question senators at home-state events about their objections to a letter spearheaded by Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) vowing to vote against bills with funding for the health care law (Everett, 8/15).

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