GOP Focuses Health Law Attacks During Two House Hearings
The hearings represent the first of what will likely be a long list of hearings and new legislation designed to question and denounce the new health law. With the measure in the spotlight, the debate surrounding its fiscal impact also is a "hot topic." Meanwhile, some Democrats who last year opposed the health overhaul are starting to find value in it.
The Washington Post: House Republicans Sharpen Attack On Health-Care Reform In Two Hill Hearings
Republicans on Wednesday used their new majority in the House of Representatives to hold the first of what they promise will be a steady drumbeat of congressional hearings to denounce the new health-care law (Aizenman, 1/26).
Politico: House GOP Packs Punch On Health Care Reform
House Republicans launched a two-pronged attack on health reform Wednesday, ripping apart the idea that it cuts spending and painting it as a disaster for business. The first hearing of the Budget Committee took on the spending argument, while the Ways and Means Committee went after the law as anti-business (Nocera and Nather, 1/27).
NPR: House GOP Launch Hearings On Health Law
Call it the next phase of the GOP challenge to President Obama's signature health law. House Republicans have launched a series of hearings aimed at giving the law the comeuppance they think it deserves (Rovner, 1/26).
The Hill: GOP Aims To Scrap Medicare Board, Calling It Soviet-Style 'Central Planning'
Continuing their attack on the healthcare reform law, Republicans on Wednesday introduced a bill that would eliminate a new advisory board with power to set Medicare rates. The bill, sponsored by Rep. Phil Roe (R-Tenn.), would repeal the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB), which starting in 2015 will advise Congress on Medicare payments. Republicans and a handful of Democrats have opposed the board because they say it invests too much power in a panel of 15 unelected bureaucrats (Millman, 1/26).
The Hill: Bill Looks To Curb Individual Mandate
A House Republican introduced a bill Tuesday that seeks to weaken the healthcare reform law's requirement for individuals to purchase insurance. The bill, introduced Tuesday by Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.), would prevent the Treasury Department from hiring new employees to enforce the so-called individual mandate. The individual mandate doesn't kick in until 2014, and the provision, considered central to the law's success, is facing several challenges in federal court (Millman, 1/26).
National Journal: Across the Capitol, Fiscal Impact Of Law Still Hot Topic
Health care was the vehicle for talking about jobs and the economy Wednesday, as Republicans pushed a message that the health care reform law undermined small businesses and the fiscal health of the country, and Democrats countered by arguing the status quo in health costs is unsustainable. Despite GOP efforts to repeal the law, there may be some cooperation on the horizon. A spokesperson for the House Ways and Means Committee said the panel would consider legislation to undo the much-maligned 1099 tax provision in the health care law, moving it to the floor shortly (McCarthy, 1/26).
The Associated Press: Medicare Official Doubts Health Care Law Savings
Two of the central promises of President Barack Obama's health care overhaul law are unlikely to be fulfilled, Medicare's independent economic expert told Congress on Wednesday. The landmark legislation probably won't hold costs down, and it won't let everybody keep their current health insurance if they like it, Chief Actuary Richard Foster told the House Budget Committee. His office is responsible for independent long-range cost estimate (Alonso-Zaldivar, 1/26).
Politico: Reform Foes Mend Fences With Base
Some conservative House Democrats who just last year ripped the health care reform bill are concluding that, on second thought, maybe it's not that bad. Back in 2010, with an angry November electorate looming on the horizon and some toxic polling data surrounding the issue, the Democratic-sponsored health care bill appeared to some within the party to be costly, ineffective and ultimately unacceptable. Now, however, with the election season behind them - and some important political lessons learned - a few of those members not only oppose the GOP-led repeal effort, they appear to have concluded that there are benefits and advantages they had overlooked (Isenstadt, 1/27).