Conservatives: ‘Keep your plan’ bill a Dem trap

Conservatives fear that Democrats have set a trap for them in the form of a Senate bill that would allow people to keep their healthcare plan if they like it.

Influential conservative commentator Erick Erickson wrote at Red State on Wednesday that the House was poised to pass a bill that would allow insurance companies the option of offering healthcare plans made obsolete by ObamaCare's rules.

The legislation, proposed by Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.), has gained dozens of co-sponsors this week and will likely see a vote in the House on Friday.

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But that bill doesn’t go as far as a Senate bill proposed by Sen. Mary Landrieu (R-La.), which would require companies to continue to offer plans that were available.

Erickson says if the House bill passes, the Senate will replace it with its stricter bill.

“It is widely acknowledged that Congressman Upton’s legislation is more messaging than substance,” Erickson wrote. “His legislation does not have anything in it that can force insurance companies, in the topsy-turvy world of ObamaCare, to keep insurance plans going. But there is a plan that does.”

Erickson argued that Landrieu’s bill is an insurance company mandate, and that “the GOP is supposedly against mandates and against government forcing private business and individuals into contracts they don’t want.”

“The House will be forced to either vote for the Landrieu plan or be characterized as siding with insurance companies against people,” Erickson wrote. “In one fell swoop, the Democrats will have the GOP on record saving Mary Landrieu’s reelection in Louisiana by casting her as the one who saved Americans’ healthcare plans, and also getting on record as really being in favor of fixing ObamaCare with the use of mandates.”

Landrieu is one of several nervous red-state Democrats facing reelection next year. Landrieu is a top target for Republicans. She and other targets, including Sens. Kay Hagan (N.C.), Joe Manchin (W.V.), Mark Pryor (Ark.), and Mark Udall (Colo.), have become increasingly vocal about the botched ObamaCare rollout.

A handful of healthcare policy experts interviewed by The Hill on Tuesday said both bills would be administrative nightmares and are complete overhauls that would take months to implement.

The administration has said it opposes the Upton bill, but White House press secretary Jay Carney dodged a question about the Landrieu bill on Tuesday.