(NEW YORK) — Republican Sen. Rand Paul said the House GOP health care bill is unlikely to pass in Congress because there are “enough conservatives that don’t want ‘Obamacare lite.’”
The Kentucky senator told ABC News chief anchor George Stephanopoulos on “This Week” Sunday that the Republican-led Congress should repeal Obamacare in its entirety.
He says the current bill, which is set for a vote Thursday in the House, doesn’t go far enough. “They’re going to repeal part of it and leave in place all of the stuff that causes your insurance rates to go through the roof,“ Paul said.
Paul added that the House GOP plan doesn’t “fix the fundamental problem of Obamacare,” which he said are the mandates on insurance companies.
“My fear is that a year from now people are going to come back and we’re going to have all the same arguments that insurance premiums are still going through the roof and we still have a mess,” he said.
In a separate interview Sunday on “This Week,” Stephanopoulos asked Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price about Paul’s proposal for a “clean repeal” of Obamacare and a “wide open debate” about how to replace it.
Price said that would “place vulnerable people at risk.”
“That’s not something that the president’s willing to do,” said Price. “What [the president] has said is that repeal and replace need to occur essentially at the same time … That’s what we’re moving forward with in this first phase.”
Paul, in his interview, countered this view. “They call it repeal and replace, but when it doesn’t fix the problems and you say you’ve fixed the problems, they’re going to own it. And I promise you, in a year, the insurance markets will still be unraveling … They have in the House plan bailouts for insurance companies. Conservatives are not for bailing out the insurance companies. We’re for empowering the consumer to drive prices down so you can get better-cost insurance,” the Kentucky Republican said.
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