The House of Representatives passed a bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act Thursday. The count was 217 to 213.
As for the local Congressional delegation, here’s how they voted:
Republican Tom Reed (NY-23rd)
Republican Claudia Tenney (NY-22nd)
Republican John Faso (NY-19)
Republican John Katko (NY-24).
On Congressman Reed:
Bret Jaspers: He voted ‘Yes’ to this bill. That wasn’t much of a surprise because he’s close to the leadership of the House, he’s close to President Trump. Here’s what he told reporters earlier this week.
Tom Reed: I do believe the language is protective of the pre-existing condition especially coming from New York State. And knowing what New York State will do when it comes to the ability to have health care regulations in place for our residents.
BJ: What he seems to be saying there is that he doesn’t think New York will apply for any waiver that would allow insurers to charge people more if they have a pre-existing condition. That was the big compromise this time around in the bill.
Although there are other parts of the bill that New York can’t choose, like a phase-out of the Medicaid expansion and changes to health insurance subsidies for private insurance.
On Congresswoman Tenney:
BJ: She voted ‘Yes.’ Last time around, it was the Faso-Collins Amendment that got her on board.
She said in a statement that, “Although the bill is not perfect, it is the first step in a comprehensive process to bring choice, affordability, and quality back to health care.” Reed has said something similar – that this is a “first step.” They would likely need Senate Democratic votes for any second or third steps.
On the Faso-Collins Amendment:
Sarah Gager: Named for John Faso and Chris Collins of the Buffalo area, right?
BJ: That’s right. It would apply specifically to New York and take away the state government’s ability to charge county governments for Medicaid costs. New York counties pay about 13 percent of the cost of Medicaid.
SG: How would that affect the state?
BJ: Well, Governor Cuomo says this is a lot of money the state’s Medicaid program would lose – over $2 billion [from this amendment].
He says the state wouldn’t be able to take on those costs so he’s said significant funding to hospitals and other health care providers will be at risk. State hospital and health care groups are very opposed to this amendment, and to the whole bill, really.
SG: What do supporters of the amendment say?
BJ: Well, Faso, Tenney, and Reed say this amendment will go towards reducing property taxes at the county level. These representatives say it’s on New York to come up with that money.