House bill would prevent extension of ObamaCare subsidies
One of the House’s most conservative lawmakers wants to prevent Congress from rescuing ObamaCare insurance subsidies if the Supreme Court strikes them down this month.
Rep. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.) rolled out a bill Thursday that would repeal most parts of ObamaCare if the court rules against the government in King v. Burwell.
Unlike recently unveiled plans from House leadership, Gosar’s plan does not include any extension of the subsidies.
That approach was immediately praised by Heritage Action, which has strongly opposed the continuation of the subsidies because they said it will “simply cover up the law’s costs while giving the impression Republicans believe subsidies are necessary for Americans to afford health insurance.”
The group described Gosar’s plan as a “conservative response to King v. Burwell.”
As many as 6.4 million people could lose their ObamaCare aid if the administration loses in court. While Republicans are eager to roll back the law, some fear the sudden loss of the subsidies could take a toll on the party’s electoral chances in 2016.
Gosar announced his plan at a time when many Republicans seem to be coalescing around a path that would temporarily restore ObamaCare subsidies through next fall’s elections.
On Wednesday, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) told members in a closed-door meeting that the leadership plan would allow states to decide for themselves whether they want to keep their subsidies.
Gosar’s opposition to Ryan’s plan is a sign of the tough road ahead for House leadership if ObamaCare loses in court.
Across both chambers, about a dozen Republican lawmakers have proposed ways to respond to a ruling against ObamaCare. House and Senate leaders have said they won’t make their plans public unless the healthcare law loses in court.
While House leaders have proposed using block grants to allow states to continue providing subsidies, Senate leaders have said all options are on the table.
The decision in King v. Burwell could come as soon as Monday and is expected by the end of June.