Idaho congressmen on new health care bill

The American Health Care Act would replace the Affordable Care Act.

BOISE - A group of Republicans introduced a plan that would repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.

It’s being called the American Health Care Act. It has support from the president, but also has critics on both side of the aisle.

KTVB reached out to Idaho’s congressional delegation to get their reaction on the plan.

Sen. Jim Risch said a good thing about this legislation is that he believes it’s a step in the right direction.

"Moving away from government health care to a health care situation that is governed by people's own individuals wants, needs and desires instead of the governments wants, needs and desires," he said.

Risch also said it’s still early and will take a lot of work.

"One of the highest objectives we have is to see that we don't cause chaos or turmoil, that this transition that we're going to do is going to be done smoothly and not disrupt the delivery of health care to people," he said.

A spokeswoman for Idaho Congressman Mike Simpson, Nikki Wallace, also said in a statement, it’s still early and that the congressman is still reviewing the proposal, but did go on to say there are some good parts to the legislation.

"There are encouraging provisions that Congressman Simpson has supported in the past, such as protections for patients with pre-existing conditions and the ability to stay on their parents' insurance until they are 26. Make no mistake, health care reform will be hard. But to stand idly by and watch Americans absorb 25 percent premium increases and allow millions of Americans to only have one insurance plan to choose from is simply unacceptable," Wallace said.

Congressman Raul Labrador sent KTVB a statement saying he wants to debate and negotiate this legislation.

“Six years ago, I promised the people of Idaho that I would do everything I could to fully repeal and replace Obamacare with a healthcare system that focused on people, not programs.  One built around successful health outcomes, not the bottom line of insurance companies. A healthcare system that reined in an out of control federal government, not one that permanently cemented government into the healthcare marketplace. They sent me to Washington to get rid of Obamacare, and replace it with something that will, once and for all, create a healthcare system that allows the market to deliver lower costs and focus on patients.  I have spent the last two days studying the American Health Care Act, and unfortunately, it is not that bill.”

Sen. Mike Crapo was not available for an interview.

© 2017 KTVB-TV


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