House Dems to mull bills to overturn Trump ObamaCare actions

House Dems to mull bills to overturn Trump ObamaCare actions
© Greg Nash

Democrats on the House Energy and Commerce Committee on Wednesday announced that they will hold a hearing next week to consider legislation to overturn conservative actions President TrumpDonald John TrumpRepublicans consider skipping witnesses in Trump impeachment trial Bombshell Afghanistan report bolsters calls for end to 'forever wars' Lawmakers dismiss Chinese retaliatory threat to US tech MORE has taken on the Affordable Care Act.

The panel will consider bills to overturn Trump’s expansion of cheaper, skimpier insurance plans that Democrats deride as “junk plans,” and to restore funding for outreach efforts to enroll people in ObamaCare plans, funding that was slashed by the Trump administration.

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A third bill would overturn guidance from the Trump administration that makes it easier for states to make conservative changes to ObamaCare.  

The hearing is part of an effort by the new Democratic House majority to highlight what they call Trump’s “sabotage” of the ACA, and take actions to reverse it.

The bills likely have no chance of passing through the GOP-controlled Senate,  but they provide Democrats a chance to show their priorities and highlight Trump’s actions.

Rep. Anna EshooAnna Georges EshooPowerful House panel to hold 'Medicare for All' hearing next week Democrats request info on Google-Ascension partnership Democrats demand FCC act over leak of phone location data MORE (D-Calif.), the chairwoman of the Energy and Commerce health subcommittee, announced the upcoming hearing during a separate hearing on Wednesday on a lawsuit brought by GOP-led states seeking to overturn ObamaCare.

Republicans used Wednesday’s hearing to argue that they support protections for people with pre-existing conditions, and would act to restore them if ObamaCare were overturned.

“We fully support protecting Americans with pre-existing conditions,” said Rep. Michael BurgessMichael Clifton BurgessHillicon Valley: House passes anti-robocall bill | Senators inch forward on privacy legislation | Trump escalates fight over tech tax | Illinois families sue TikTok | Senators get classified briefing on ransomware House passes anti-robocall bill Overnight Health Care: GOP senator says drug price action unlikely this year | House panel weighs ban on flavored e-cigs | New York sues Juul MORE (R-Texas), the top Republican on the subcommittee.

Democrats have said countless GOP attempts to repeal the ACA, which includes those protections, undermines that claim.

Republicans on Wednesday also reiterated a call they made on Tuesday for a hearing on Medicare for All, saying Democrats should allow the liberal idea to be examined to show its weaknesses.

Rep. Frank Pallone Jr.Frank Joseph PalloneOvernight Health Care — Presented by That's Medicaid — Deal on surprise medical bills faces obstacles | House GOP unveils rival drug pricing measure ahead of Pelosi vote | Justices to hear case over billions in ObamaCare payments Obstacles remain for deal on surprise medical bills This week: House impeachment inquiry hits crucial stretch MORE (D-N.J.), the chairman of the full committee, fiercely pushed back on that call.

“Oh sure, we'll have a hearing on something that you think is going to destroy the country,” Pallone said.

“Now don’t get me wrong, we will address that issue, I'm not suggesting we shouldn't, but the cynicism of it all,” he added.