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June 29, 2017

*-- CBO study: GOP health care plan will leave more uninsured, raise premiums --*

The Congressional Budget Office released its analysis of the Republican plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act, resulting in a backlash that could defeat the bill.

The CBO study estimates that the Better Care Reconciliation Act will leave 22 million more people uninsured by 2026. It will also cut Medicaid by $772 billion over the next 10 years and reduce tax credits and selected coverage provisions by $408 billion.

"By 2026, among people under age 65, enrollment in Medicaid would fall by about 16 percent and an estimated 49 million people would be uninsured, compared with 28 million who would lack insurance that year under current law," the CBO analysis states.

The analysis estimates that 15 million people will lose coverage due to the cuts in Medicaid and that most of those people will not purchase private coverage because the costs will be too high.
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It will also put a hefty raise in premiums for people 64 and older, a population that is expected to balloon over the next 10 years due to aging Baby Boomers.

Under current health care law, a 64-year-old with an income of $26,500 per year pays an average of $1,700 in premiums. Under the Republican plan, that average cost will inflate to $6,500.

"It's a terrible bill," Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) said Monday.

Paul is one of four Republican senators who have said they will not vote to allow the bill to move forward. The other three include Susan Collins (R-ME), Dean Heller (R-Nev.) and Ron Johnson (R-Wis.)

Politico reported that others Republican senators are on the fence, including Shelley Moore Capito (R-W. Va) and Marco Rubio (R-Fla.).

With 52 Republicans in the Senate, Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) can't afford to lose more than 2 GOP votes.

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