KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Rep. Ryan Says Budget Plan Will Assume Repeal Of Health Law

Updated at 2:35 p.m.

In an interview on Fox, the House Budget chairman doesn't make clear if the plan he will announce this week will call for a total repeal of the 2010 law but he says Republicans are still keen to get rid of the health overhaul.

The Washington Post: Paul Ryan: Budget Blueprint Will Promote Repealing Health Care Law
Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) said Sunday that the budget blueprint he plans to unveil later this week will promote repealing President Obama's signature health care law. "Yes, our budget does promote repealing Obamacare and replacing it with a better system," Ryan, the chairman of the House Budget Committee, said on "Fox News Sunday." Past House Republican efforts to repeal the president’s health care law have failed and the Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of law last year (Sullivan, 3/10).

The Hill: Rep. Paul Ryan: House Budget Will Assume The Repeal Of 'ObamaCare'
House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) on Sunday said he will not back down from the battle to repeal the 2010 Affordable Care Act even though some Republicans think the party should move on. Ryan dismissed criticism that House Republicans have virtually no chance of dismantling the signature legislative accomplishment of Obama's first term and their efforts might be better expended elsewhere. ... Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) suggested shortly after Election Day that the political calculus had changed on repealing the controversial law (Bolton, 3/10).

Reuters: Ryan Says Budget Deal Possible As He Readies His Own Plan
Representative Paul Ryan, the chairman of the House of Representatives Budget Committee, acknowledged that Democrats who control the Senate are likely to defeat his proposal to repeal Obama's signature healthcare law and other elements of his plan to balance the budget within 10 years. But Ryan, whose ideas on taxes and spending gained national prominence when he was selected as the Republican vice-presidential candidate last year, said Democrats and Republicans might be able to agree on less dramatic steps that would narrow budget deficits in coming years. ... Ryan's budget plan also rests on several other approaches that Democrats have rejected in the past. It would impose deep cuts on food assistance for the poor and dramatically scale back federal contributions to the Medicaid health program for the poor. It would give retirees an option to stay in the current Medicare health program or use a subsidy to purchase private coverage (Sullivan, 3/10).

Bloomberg: Ryan Says His Budget Would Slow Annual Spending Growth To 3.4%
Ryan said the plan would take money designated for expanding Medicaid, to provide more insurance to low-income people, and give it to states as block grants to provide coverage themselves. That would save $770 billion in 10 years, he said. "By repealing Obamacare and Medicaid expansions that have not yet occurred, we are preventing the explosion of a program that is already failing," Ryan said (Rowley, 3/10).

Fox News: Ryan: New House Republican Budget Includes ObamaCare Repeal
Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan, chairman of the House Budget Committee, said Sunday that his new budget includes the repeal of President Obama's health-care reform law known as ObamaCare. ... Ryan said the focus of the ObamaCare repeal would be to stop the expansion of Medicaid, the federal program that provides medical services to low-income U.S. families. "Our budget does promote repealing ObamaCare," said Ryan, who was not clear whether his 2014 budget is based on a full repeal (3/10).

Politico: Ryan Defends Obamacare Repeal In Budget
House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan on Sunday defended his new budget's assumption that President Barack Obama's healthcare law would be repealed. "Are you saying, as part of your budget you assume the repeal of ObamaCare?," "Fox News Sunday" host Chris Wallace asked the Wisconsin Republican and former vice presidential nominee. "Yes," Ryan answered, "Well, that's not going to happen," Wallace said. Republicans have long advocated a repeal of the Affordable Care Act. But Obama's reelection and continued Democratic control of the Senate make a repeal virtually impossible. Nevertheless, Ryan said budget documents were about a vision for the country. "We believe Obamacare is a program that will not work," Ryan said. "We believe Obamacare will actually lead to hospitals and doctors and health care providers turning people away"  (Tau, 3/10). 

Politico: Ryan On Medicare Proposal: 'It's Not A Voucher'
House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan defended his proposed changes to the Medicare program on Sunday, insisting that his plan does not turn Medicare into a "voucher" as Democrats have charged. "It's not a voucher — it's premium support, those are very different," the Wisconsin Republican said on "Fox News Sunday." "A voucher is you go to your mailbox, you get a check and you go buy something. That's not what we're saying," Ryan said. "We're saying, let's convert Medicare into a system that works like the one I have as a congressman," he said. "Medicare subsidizes your plan based on who you are. Total subsidy for the poor and the sick. Less of a subsidy for wealthy seniors" (Tau, 3/10).

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