House Republican leaders announced proposed changes to their health care overhaul late Monday in an effort to shore up support from the GOP’s rank-and-file ahead of an expected floor vote later this week.
The bill’s 43-page “manager’s amendment” is aimed at placating Republicans unhappy that nonpartisan analysts said the legislation would drive up costs for older people.
The amendment was unveiled hours after President Donald Trump told a rally in Louisville, Ky., that he wasn’t wedded to the current version of the bill.
“We’re going to negotiate. And it’s going to go to the Senate and back and forth,” he said, assuring that the “end result is going to be wonderful and it’s going to work great.”
The measure would pave the way for the Senate, if it chooses, to make the bill’s tax credit more generous for people age 50 to 65. Details in the documents released were unclear, but one GOP lawmaker and an aide told the Associated Press that the language sets aside $85 billion over 10 years for that purpose.
The measure would also accelerate the repeal of tax increases on higher earners, the medical industry and others to this year instead of 2018. It would be easier for people to deduct expenses from their taxes, and older and disabled Medicaid beneficiaries would get larger benefits.
It would also curb future Medicaid growth and let states impose work requirements on some recipients.
House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., said the amendment was the result of an “inclusive approach” involving the White House and congressional Republicans.
“With the president’s leadership and support for this historic legislation, we are now one step closer to keeping our promise to the American people and ending the Obamacare nightmare,” the Speaker said in a statement.
Trump will meet with Republican lawmakers on Capitol Hill to discuss the legislation Tuesday morning. The House Rules Committee is expected to review the legislation Wednesday.