November 15th, 2013
01:38 PM ET
10 months ago

House passes proposed GOP Obamacare changes

Updated 4 p.m. ET, 11/15/2013

(CNN) - The House approved Republican legislation on Friday giving health insurers the option of extending plans through 2014 that would otherwise be canceled for not complying with Affordable Care Act standards.

The bill, approved 261-157, would also allow new customers to enroll in those plans. Thirty-nine Democrats crossed party lines and joined a nearly unanimous GOP caucus in voting for the measure proposed by Rep. Fred Upton, R-Michigan.

It has little to no chance of clearing the Democratic-controlled Senate, however.

The White House has also indicated President Barack Obama would veto the measure if it reaches his desk, saying the Republican plan would undermine the integrity of the law aimed at providing health coverage to millions of Americans without it.

The Senate is taking a wait-and-see attitude about possible legislation over the politically charged insurance cancellations after Obama ordered administrative steps on Thursday to address the matter.

Obama's signature domestic policy initiative has been marred by the disastrous launch of the HealthCare.gov website, which allows consumers to buy new health plans online, and by the policy cancellations.

Both problems have put congressional Democrats in a difficult political position since the Affordable Care Act was approved in 2010 with no Republican support and signed by Obama, a Democratic president.

Earlier, the House rejected a similar plan offered by Democrats, but it was more restrictive than the Republican measure and therefore not supported by the majority.

Separately, Obama sat down with insurance company executives on Friday at the White House.

Prior to the meeting, the President said that he and his administration would brainstorm with and solicit ideas from industry on how to smoothly carry out the changes he is making to the Affordable Care Act.

Obama said there would be a "collaborative process" around his proposal to reverse insurance plan cancellations due to broader coverage requirements under the sweeping law.

"We want to make sure that we get this done," Obama said.


Filed under: Congress • House • Obamacare
soundoff (354 Responses)
  1. JLM

    I am disgusted that any Dems would vote on a bill that will undermine the ACA. Healthcare costs are breaking our country and its citizens and the ACA is the best attempt to change that trajectory we have. The GOP is offering no viable alternative and yet make every effort to destroy the ACA that is vital to America!!

    November 15, 2013 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  2. David Listman

    Wait a minute, didn't the president just propose this yesterday? Why would he veto this bill? Just because the Republicans tabled it?

    November 15, 2013 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  3. Paul in Pa

    DEMS: "Well.... We're just doing a 'John Kerry'........ We're voting Against IT Now.... after We voted FOR IT..... so NOW We're Against it Unless We get voted back Into Office in 2014... Then We'll be FOR IT Again !"

    So Vote for ME and My Integrity and No That's No LIES !

    November 15, 2013 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  4. Ellen

    This is exactly the plan that Ted Cruz was advocating for when he filibustered last month. Yet he was vilified in the media. Look who ended up being right!

    November 15, 2013 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  5. Doug Brown

    If one more photographer takes one more picture of Obama with his lips tightly pursed, i am going to run toward the State hospital screaming in the nude.

    November 15, 2013 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  6. sonny chapman

    Sen. Mary Landrieu's Bill makes sense;ergo, no chance of becoming law.

    November 15, 2013 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  7. Mike

    If Harry Reid doesnt let this vote happen, well either way, his party will be toast next yr. I would love to see someone else other than that idiot Harry Reid over the Senate. This is going to be nightmare of Democrat street.

    November 15, 2013 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  8. sammy750

    These Democrats voted for a bill that allow health insurance companies to sell fraud insurance to the people. The Republicans and Democrats just voted for the Insurance companies to continue selling Insurance that will not pay hospital or MRI type bills. Why are they voting for a bill that destroys the people of this nation. Why are the Republicans against the people for wanting insurance to ensure they get better care. Right now the tax payers in the states are paying billions for those not insured and Republicans agree with that.

    November 15, 2013 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  9. The Mayor of Medinah

    "Another Blow for Obama" is Nancy Pelosi hiding under his desk again?

    November 15, 2013 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  10. mikey

    If the insurance companies would just COMPLY with the law instead of canceling people, none of this would be an issue. But – hey – make money off people who want to cover their health care, when it comes time to do the RIGHT THING, why not just cancel them outright? Like the insurance companies didn't get enough of a hand-out from the gov't forcing people into PRIVATE insurance instead of single-payer. Nope, we need another law to force insurance companies to do the right thing. Sigh...

    November 15, 2013 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  11. Andy

    What in the world is going on. The GOP is concern about the ACA, but time is surely coming close to avoiding another Gov, shutdown, and yet there's nothing being done to take care of that. Sen. Cruz is saying that the shutdown was necessary. People we better wake up.

    November 15, 2013 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  12. steve

    well, you know. it's not because the plan was ill-conceived, rushed, and unimplemented; it's because everyone who raised questions about it was racist.

    November 15, 2013 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  13. ImvotingforHillary

    Wasn't the ACA based on a Conservative plan? Just more proof Conservative ideals are wrong for America.

    November 15, 2013 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  14. Madison

    Just more time wasting show boating to appease the teahadists. What is this, the 46th or 47th vote to repeal Affordable Health Care? A safe vote for Democrats in tea bagger states. No chance of actual passage so why not?

    November 15, 2013 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  15. PoliticiansRcrooks

    Will Harry Reid be the leader of the Party of No when this bill hits the senate? Answer: YES as per usual.

    November 15, 2013 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  16. samb

    This is another unsuccessful attempt by the party of obstruction to end Obamacare!

    November 15, 2013 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  17. civilrightist

    Eventually everyone will feel the pain of Obamacare. Spending your own cash tends to make people see clearly. Hopefully this whole thing turns into just a lost decade.

    November 15, 2013 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  18. Paul Williamson

    Everyone in the US should have to buy quality Health Insurance, whether it is through the exchanges or the open market. We are all paying for those bloodsuckers who have no insurance, get into an accident, and then we all pay to fix them up through higher premiums. They are the first to complain about Obamacare, because they have been getting a free ride for decades. It is similar to uninsured motorists.

    November 15, 2013 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  19. Ben

    The GOP shouldn't help Obama like this. The ACA is his baby, just sit back and enjoy watching it burn down, laugh as he breaks law after law trying to fix things, take glee in his incompetence, and make sure you record every time Democrats lie for him, every prediction they make that turns out to be complete bull. And make damn sure the American people know that this was ALL the left, their plan, their failure.

    November 15, 2013 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  20. Chooch

    It really does amaze me when people applaud these repeated attempts by Republicans to obstruct the ACA when there was no chance, ZERO, that any of the previous 40+ attempts and now this attempt, would move forward past the Senate, much less not be vetoed by the President. Instead of legislating for other issues that should have been, could have been, and eventually will have to be addressed, they played this redundant "dog and pony show". The GOP party turned into the "Get Obama Party". That is all they have concentrated on for the past 5 years...What good has this done for our nation or the people applauding these tactics? What has anyone gained beyond the politicians? No sane person that is truly concerned with the major issues facing our nation would be supporting these types of obstruction tactics that have wasted a lot of time, money, and effort, that would have served this nation much better, put elsewhere. It is all about party loyalty for many people that support the Republican Party. It can not be about anything else. The tactics and the policies used by the current Republican "leadership" are not helping anyone in this country and if people actually took off the blinders and stopped buying into the tripe and actually looked open minded at what has been going on for the last 5 years, you would see your support for these antics are holding you back, not helping you. If only, people would stop looking for an excuse to oppose the current administration, but rather debate, compromise, and co-operate in a GENUINE effort to resolve issues instead of creating them, we would be a lot better off as a nation.

    November 15, 2013 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  21. andyv2k14

    So, you know the law is flawed, you know many Americans are unhappy. Yet, because it is your 'signature law' you refuse to allow someone to pass a bill that simply delays some portions of the law from taking effect while we work for better solutions. This sounds very childish and silly. Rather like the restaurant owners in Kitchen Nightmares who refuse to change their restaurants, even though they are floundering and failing. The fact that a good number of Democrats crossed the aisle should be an indicator that this is not a Republican-Democrat issue. This is an issue that affects the American people. The House is generally speaking more representative of America as a whole (due to Congressional districts, it gives rural communities their only chance to voice their concerns). I know that in Senate and Presidential races, my part of the country is voted out by big urban areas, the House is the only place where we can make a stand.

    Obamacare was passed in the most unilateral way imagineable. One party, riding on the votes of major urban centers passes a law that is opposed by the other and by many people in rural communities. This is tyranny in democracy, just what our Founding Fathers warned about (the idea that 300 tyrants one mile away were just as bad as 1 tyrant 300 miles away). I am having a law forced on me because the masses in New York and California want it, not because it will actually benefit me or the people I care about. My mother has to see specialist doctors. One of them is dropping her now because he does not take the new policy. Total BS, she has seen this doctor for around ten years, but apparently Big Government has decided she doesn't need to anymore. As Americans, we should have to work hard for what we get, not have it handed to us by the government at other peoples' expense.

    November 15, 2013 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  22. www.twitter.com/hlmelsaid

    Pass changes.

    November 15, 2013 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  23. Madison

    Do not make much of the handful of Democrats voting yes on this. They are from bright red tea nut filled states, and this is a safe vote because everyone knows with 100% certainty that this vote, like the 45 before it to repeal ACA, is going nowhere.

    November 15, 2013 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  24. Bob

    copanut, "This is such a joke. The plans that would be extended are horrible plans and virtually everyone affected would be far better off in terms of both policy and price with an ACA plan. It's all just political posturing for the ignorant."
    Ignorance is calling something you know nothing about horrible. But you can toe the party line and tell me my plan is horrible because I chose not to be covered for maternity. I am an older guy and have not been knocked up yet and don't plan on it.

    November 15, 2013 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  25. bryan

    this is the first bi-partisan bill I have seen in 10 years

    November 15, 2013 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
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