Healthcare repeal bill coming before Obama’s annual address

The incoming chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee said Sunday that Republicans will bring up a healthcare repeal measure before President Obama even delivers his annual address to Congress this month.

“As part of our pledge, we said that we would bring up a vote to repeal
healthcare early,” Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.) said on “Fox News Sunday.” “That will happen before the president’s State of the
Union address.”

“We have 242 Republicans,” he said. “There will be a significant number of
Democrats, I think, that will join us. You will remember when that vote
passed in the House last March, it only passed by seven votes.”

Upton said that leaders are counting on Democrats who voted against the massive healthcare reform package to do so again, along with greater GOP numbers and polling showing unpopularity of the bill at among as many as 60 percent of Americans.

“I don’t think we’re going to be that far off from having the votes to actually override a veto,” he said.

Upton said that even if repeal faces hurdles, House action will “put enormous pressure on the Senate to do the same thing.”

After that, Upton said, House Republicans will work on chipping away the healthcare bill piece by piece, such as the 1099 requirements and individual mandates.

Upton also said that the Stupak language — an executive order from Obama to ensure that public dollars wouldn’t be used to fund abortions — will be taken up early as a separate bill.

“We will look at these individual pieces to see if we can’t have the thing crumble,” he said.

—This post was updated at 1 p.m.

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