The plan drew immediate support from Heritage Action and Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah), the architect of the original defunding strategy, suggesting that even the most stringent ObamaCare critics could find it acceptable in the coming weeks.
The Graves bill differs from leadership's in several ways. For one, it would fund the government for one year instead of the three months proposed by House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.). In hard numbers, Cantor's plan would keep the government on a top-line level of $986 billion as dictated by the 2013 sequester. The Graves bill would use the $967 billion level called for by the 2014 sequester, which called for deeper cuts.
Read more about the Graves bill at Healthwatch.
Delay strategy takes shape: While Graves's bill proved popular on Thursday, other lawmakers are still putting together an alternate strategy that calls for delaying the healthcare reform law — all of it — by one year. Rep. John Fleming (R-La.) is spearheading an effort to demand an ObamaCare delay as a condition for raising the country's debt limit, rather than seeking to defund it through a spending bill.
Fleming said Thursday that his strategy would delay the entire law, including provisions that have already taken effect.
"We would delay everything, even taxes. You would get refunds if you made tax payments, you'd get that refunded to you," he said.
The government is expected to hit the debt limit in mid-October, and people can begin signing up for ObamaCare's new insurance exchanges on Oct. 1.
So, what would happen to people who already signed up if the law is delayed? Their coverage wouldn't kick in as scheduled, Fleming said.
"They would probably option into it, and I don't know whether they send a check or not, or get a bill, but even if they did, they would have the money refunded," Fleming said. "Because again, their coverage doesn't go into effect until Jan. 1, so that gives us three months to get all that resolved."
Another GOP governor embraces Medicaid: Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett will likely become the latest Republican governor to embrace ObamaCare's Medicaid expansion, the news site Lancaster Online reported Thursday. Pennsylvania would be the 27th state to adopt the expansion. It would cover roughly 680,000 people in the state, according to Lancaster Online.
Healthwatch has the story.
Lessons from Part D: The American Acton Forum, the think tank led by former Congressional Budget Office Director Douglas Holtz-Eakin, released a new analysis Thursday of the experience implementing Medicare Part D. The lessons, according to the AAF: Competition works.
“Rather than dismissing the role of competition in Part D’s success, it would be better to learn from the program’s experience and apply these lessons in the context of other government programs. In short, Part D's success should make it a model for future programs and future reforms," Holtz-Eakin wrote.
The analysis is available here.
State by state
Sebelius bargains with governors to shore up health law
Report: Detroit may pay retirees to buy insurance through exchanges
Goldwater Institute sues over Ariz. Medicaid law
Health Policy Source / Missouri Hospital Association
Health Policy Source / Elsevier
Health Policy Source / North Carolina Hospital Association
Unions' misgivings on health law burst into view
ObamaCare insurance co-ops at the starting gate
US measles tally already among worst in 15 years
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Government shutdown inches closer as GOP leaders delay vote in House
AFL-CIO demands ObamaCare changes
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