December 5, 2016 at 3:45 pm ET
McCarthy Says No Date for Obamacare Repeal, but Coming ‘Soon’
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy said the process for repealing Obamacare will likely start as the next Congress gets going.
“I don’t want to set a date, but I would tell you very soon in the new Congress,” McCarthy told reporters Monday. His comments come as some Republicans are coalescing around a plan to repeal the law without a replacement drafted, with a transition period to allow current consumers to maintain coverage as the GOP works to implement a new system.
But other Republicans are expressing apprehension with that plan. Sen. Susan Collins may not vote to repeal the Affordable Care Act without a detailed replacement, the Maine Republican told the Portland Free Press on Friday.
Collins, a moderate Republican, told the paper that the health care law needs to be fixed, but she doesn’t know how she would vote to repeal it without a clear alternative. Her top priority would be to ensure current Obamacare consumers can maintain coverage in a post-Obamacare system.
“You can’t just drop insurance for 84,000 people,” Collins reportedly said.
She added that a proposal by Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) to draft a replacement plan before repealing the law was “a more cautious approach.”
Alexander, who chairs the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, which will have jurisdiction over an Obamacare replacement, has said he opposes repealing the law without a replacement.