McConnell: Changes coming to ObamaCare next year

McConnell: Changes coming to ObamaCare next year
© Greg Nash

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellCongress pulls punches on Russian bounties firestorm Congress under pressure to provide billions for school openings Hillicon Valley: Facebook considers political ad ban | Senators raise concerns over civil rights audit | Amazon reverses on telling workers to delete TikTok MORE (R-Ky.) says major changes are coming for ObamaCare next year, no matter who wins the White House.

Pointing to rising costs and shaky insurance markets, McConnell said the next president will have to work with Congress to keep the situation from worsening, though he did not specifically say the healthcare law would be repealed.

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“It will be revisited by the next president, whoever that is,” McConnell said at an event Monday with the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce. “No matter who wins the election, no matter who’s in control of Congress.”

The Kentucky Republican, who has long opposed President Obama’s signature healthcare law, did not specifically say Congress should try to repeal the law next year.

Instead, he pointed to rising premiums, co-payments and deductibles across the country, as well as “chaos in the private health insurance market.” This year, major insurers such as UnitedHealthCare and Aetna have decided to pull back from the ObamaCare marketplace, citing larger-than-expected financial losses.

“I don’t think there’s any question that ObamaCare is crashing,” McConnell told the crowd, according to a recording of the event.

GOP presidential nominee Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpDavis: Supreme Court decision is bad news for Trump, good news for Vance Meadows trying to root out suspected White House leakers by feeding them info: Axios Pressley hits DeVos over reopening schools: 'I wouldn't trust you to care for a house plant let alone my child' MORE has vowed to repeal the healthcare law immediately if he is elected, though that would likely require Republicans to control both chambers of Congress.

McConnell and then-Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerLott says lobbying firm cut ties to prevent him from taking clients Lobbying firm cuts ties to Trent Lott amid national anti-racism protests Bush, Romney won't support Trump reelection: NYT MORE (R-Ohio) in the past sent an ObamaCare repeal bill to President Obama’s desk, which was swiftly vetoed.

Six years into ObamaCare, most health experts say it is logistically almost impossible to eliminate the full law. Sixteen million people have gained coverage, and private health insurance markets have made major changes to conform to the new rules.  

If Democrats win the White House again in 2016, the GOP’s next chance to take aim at the law would be 2020 — a full decade after the law's passage.

This year, McConnell faces a tough task trying to keep control of the Senate. Republicans are defending 24 seats, compared to 10 seats for Democrats. Of those 10 seats, only Nevada — retiring Democratic Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidMcConnell warns Democrats not to change filibuster rule Filibuster reform gains steam with Democrats The Hill's Morning Report - Trump wants executive order on policing; silent on pending bills MORE's seat — is considered a pickup opportunity for Republicans.

Democrats need to gain five Senate seats — or four if they keep the White House — to win control of the chamber.