Study finds GOP plans give low-income people less help than ObamaCare

Study finds GOP plans give low-income people less help than ObamaCare
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A new study finds that financial assistance under proposed Republican replacement plans would provide significantly less help for low-income people than under ObamaCare. 

The study from the Kaiser Family Foundation finds that the average tax credit to help people buy insurance would be at least 36 percent lower in 2020 under Republican replacement plans than under the Affordable Care Act.


People who have higher incomes and are younger could end up getting more assistance under the GOP plans.

ObamaCare’s tax credits are based on people’s income, meaning that low-income people get higher assistance. The tax credits in a leaked draft House Republican plan and in a previous plan from then-Rep. Tom Price (R-Ga.), now the secretary of Health and Human Services, base their tax credits on age, meaning that people get the same amount of help regardless of their income. 

That difference between the GOP plans and ObamaCare means that low-income people would get less help under the replacement plans, the analysis finds. 

“For current marketplace enrollees, the House Discussion Draft and Price bill would provide substantially lower tax credits overall than the ACA,” the analysis states. “People who are lower income, older, or live in high premium areas would be particularly disadvantaged under the House Discussion Draft and Price bill relative to the ACA.”

A 60-year-old making $40,000 a year would get a $6,752 tax credit under ObamaCare, compared to $4,000 under the GOP draft. 

In contrast, a younger person, at age 40, making the same amount would get more help under the GOP plan: $3,000 compared to $1,021 under ObamaCare. 

Republicans argue that basing tax credits on income provides a disincentive to work. The details of their final plan are also not yet clear, given that they are still working on it, though the draft gives a general idea of their approach.