Ryan: Plan to replace ObamaCare 'not at all' like subsidies

Ryan: Plan to replace ObamaCare 'not at all' like subsidies

The architect of the House GOP’s backup plan for ObamaCare is pushing back against criticism that his party’s strategy does not veer far enough away from the current law.  

House Ways and Means Chairman Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanJuan Williams: Pelosi shows her power Cheney takes shot at Trump: 'I like Republican presidents who win re-election' Cheney allies flock to her defense against Trump challenge MORE (R-Wis.) said Tuesday that his plan’s proposed tax credits are “not at all” like the tax credits under the current law, which the GOP hopes will be struck down by the Supreme Court this year.

Paul, along with other top Republicans, published an op-ed Tuesday laying out how they would react to a court decision that struck down the tax credits, or subsidies, in King v. Burwell. Arguments for the case begin Wednesday and a decision would likely be announced in June.

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Paul said in an interview with Fox News that the Obama administration’s tax credits are actually “thinly veiled subsidies policed by the Internal Revenue Service.”

When asked if the subsidies and the tax credits were the same thing, Ryan replied, “Not at all, not at all.”

“They are subsidies, [the administration] calls them tax credits,” he said. “They’re saying, buy the Washington-mandated plan and the IRS will police how you buy that. We’re saying, give people freedom.”

Fears have grown within the Republican Party over how to respond to a conservative victory in King v. Burwell, which would mean a loss of $25 billion in subsidies to about 8 million people. As many as three-quarters of those people could lose their coverage altogether, and some Republicans are afraid they could be blamed.

Ryan, as well as Republicans in the Senate, say its important to put some sort of backstop in place to prevent the subsidies from immediately evaporating.

But hard-lined conservatives, like Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R), argue that the Republican Party should not try to restore subsidies.

“Americans would pay billions more in higher taxes to fund the newly-restored subsidies, making Obamacare that much more entrenched. What self-proclaimed conservative of sound mind would do such a thing?” he asked in an op-ed Tuesday.