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Cruz, Lee, Paul demand 'full repeal' of ObamaCare

Cruz, Lee, Paul demand 'full repeal' of ObamaCare
© Greg Nash

Three GOP senators are adding an extra hurdle to the looming fight over nixing the Affordable Care Act, arguing they want a "full repeal" of ObamaCare. 

Sens. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulNoisy democracy, or rude people behaving like children? Lawmakers, Wall Street shrug off Trump's escalating Fed attacks Five things to watch for in deteriorating US-Saudi relations MORE (Ky.), Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzNoisy democracy, or rude people behaving like children? Democrats hold fading odds of winning Senate this November Donald Trump Jr. emerges as GOP fundraising force MORE (Texas) and Mike LeeMichael (Mike) Shumway LeeSenators pledge action on Saudi journalist’s disappearance Bernie Sanders: US should pull out of war in Yemen if Saudis killed journalist Senators warn Trump that Saudi relationship is on the line MORE (Utah) each pointed to the Senate's 2015 repeal bill as the "bare minimum" for the 2017 repeal legislation.

"2 yrs ago, the GOP Congress voted to repeal Obamacare. That 2015 repeal language should be the floor, the bare minimum," they each tweeted, along with the hashtag "FullRepeal."

 

 

The tweets come after the conservative House Freedom Caucus voted to oppose an ObamaCare repeal bill if it does not go as far as the repeal measure that passed in 2015.

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Conservatives have been pushing for the 2015 repeal bill, which kills the core elements of the law including its subsidies, taxes, mandates and Medicaid expansion, to be brought up again. 

Paul — who has warned about only partially repealing the Affordable Care Act — went further, adding on Twitter that GOP lawmakers shouldn't settle for "ObamaCare lite."
 
Their tweets come after a draft House GOP plan was leaked late last week. 
 
The bill would dismantle core aspects of the healthcare law and replace them with a system centered on a new tax credit. If three GOP senators were to vote against the bill it would effectively sink it's chances of clearing through Congress. 
 
Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) appeared to take a shot at the plan on Twitter, noting that without "substantial" changes he couldn't support it. 

"There is nothing conservative about a plan that ultimately amounts to a new entitlement program and a new tax increase," he said.

The leaked document would eliminate subsidies for people to obtain coverage and also phase out federal funds for states to expand Medicaid in 2020. It also includes a tax credit ranging from $2,000 to $4,000 that would increase based on a person's age to help recipients afford insurance. 

Meadows joined in on the Senate tweet storm, noting he supports Cruz, Lee and Paul.

"Every tax, every mandate, every regulation of #Obamacare needs to go," the Freedom Caucus chairman tweeted.

 

 

If Cruz, Lee and Paul refuse to vote for anything short of the 2015 bill, that could add a fatal hurdle to passing ObamaCare repeal, as Republicans can only afford to lose two senators to get the legislation through the Senate.

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerFive takeaways from the final Tennessee Senate debate Schumer rips Trump 'Medicare for all' op-ed as 'smears and sabotage' GOP senator suspects Schumer of being behind release of Ford letter MORE (D-N.Y.) predicted earlier on Monday that Republicans could fail to repeal ObamaCare because of divisions on defunding Planned Parenthood and Medicaid expansion. 

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGOP Senate candidate: Kavanaugh 'debacle' 'hugely motivating' to Missouri voters Trump praises McConnell: He ‘stared down the angry left-wing mob’ to get Kavanaugh confirmed Murkowski not worried about a Palin challenge MORE (R-Ky.) predicted that the Senate's repeal effort would be similar to the 2015 bill.