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Budget legislation passed by the House last week that includes provisions to repeal key parts of the health care reform law, including the employer and individual mandates, faces opposition in the Senate from an unlikely source: conservative Senate Republicans.
Three GOP senators — Ted Cruz, R-Texas, Mike Lee, R-Utah, and Marco Rubio, R-Fla., said Thursday that unless the legislation is broadened to repeal the entire Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, they will vote against the bill.
“If this bill cannot be amended so that it fully repeals Obamacare pursuant to Senate rules, we cannot support this bill,” the senators said in a joint statement. “With millions of Americans now getting health premium increase notices in the mail, we owe our constituents nothing less,” they added.
The repeal provisions are embedded in a broader budget reconciliation bill, H.R. 3762, the House passed Friday on a largely partisan 240-189 vote.
Aside from repealing the employer and individual mandates, the measure also includes repeal of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s excise tax on costly health care plans and a tax on manufacturers of medical devices.
The measure also is under fire — for a very different reason — from the Obama administration.
“Repealing key elements of the Affordable Care Act would result in millions of individuals remaining uninsured or losing the insurance they have today,” the White House said in a statement last week.
The health care reform replacement plan announced Tuesday by Republican presidential hopeful Scott Walker would offer premium tax credits based on age rather than income to help people without employer coverage buy health insurance.