Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney told Fox News Sunday that the Trump administration will release a replacement for Obamacare soon. According to CNN, Mulvaney hosted administration leaders at Camp David over the weekend to come up with a replacement for the Affordable Care Act that they could run on in the 2020 election.
“I do think you’ll see a plan here fairly shortly,” Mulvaney said.
“Republicans have better ideas than Democrats. We should not be afraid to talk about that. We want to run on this.”
Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Seema Verma met with several other officials, including Mulvaney, to discuss health care reform. The group discussed addressing drug prices and how to shape up the insurance marketplace going forward. The plan is to strengthen Republican messaging around health care, an issue that has traditionally been the strength of Democrats and is attributed to being one of the reasons that Democrats took back the House in the 2018 mid-term elections.
“You can’t beat something with nothing,” Mulvaney said.
“Democrats have already admitted that Obamacare doesn’t work — that’s why they’re out there talking about this amorphous Medicare for All.”
The conversation started when the Trump administration surprised many Republican leaders by announcing that they were working on a plan to replace Obamacare after the Justice Department announced that it supported a lower court ruling invalidating the ACA without having anything in place to replace it.
Trump said that he was having Republicans in Congress draft a bill that would replace the current system, leaving lawmakers and the White House both saying the other was going to take the lead in tackling healthcare. But after a short period of chaotic scrambling, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had a private meeting with Trump where he told the president that Congress wouldn’t be taking up the issue of health care before the 2020 election.
In an about-face, Trump agreed to wait until after the election, saying that he was certain that he would be re-elected and Republicans would take back the House.
“I was never planning a vote prior to the 2020 Election on the wonderful HealthCare package that some very talented people are now developing for me & the Republican Party. It will be on full display during the Election as a much better & less expensive alternative to ObamaCare,” he said.