RI Leaders Relieved GOP Health Plan Off The Table

Mar 24, 2017

Credit Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

  Rhode Island officials are breathing a collective sigh of relief that the plug has been pulled on the GOP health care plan to replace Obamacare. 

Health officials had recently briefed reporters on the potential impact of the GOP plan. Interim head of the Executive Office of Health and Human Services Anya Rader Wallack called it a "grave threat." The plan would have cut millions of dollars to Medicaid, eliminated tax subsidies for people who buy health insurance plans on HealthSource RI, and could have lifted the requirement that insurers cover 10 "essential health benefits," such as free preventive care and mental health care.

In a statement, Gov. Gina Raimondo said, "In Rhode Island and across America, we sent a message to leaders in Washington: We will stand up for the millions of Americans whose lives would be put at risk if Congress repeals the Affordable Care Act to give tax breaks to millionaires and billionaires."

Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) said, "Trumpcare was such a mess even Republicans couldn’t support it.  Now we can move on.  I hope to work with my colleagues – Democrats and Republicans alike – on ways we can strengthen and improve our health care system.”

Rep. Jim Langevin (D-RI) also weighed in, saying "A majority of Americans are opposed to this hastily written bill that will eliminate health coverage for tens of thousands of Rhode Islanders and millions of people across the country. Thankfully, so are a majority of the Representatives they elected to Congress. Republicans refused to take a vote because they don’t have the numbers to pass this morally reprehensible legislation that will increase costs on hardworking families, reduce access to lifesaving care, and eliminate services for the sick, the poor, the elderly and people with disabilities."