House Ways and Means Committee approves AHCA

The American Health Care Act is one step closer to passage in the House after approval by the Ways and Means Committee, CNN reports.

Committee members spent 18 hours in session before voting at 4:30 a.m. Thursday in favor of their portion of the measure, according to the report. The vote was 23-16.

The House Energy and Commerce Committee also took up the AHCA, but was still debating as of approximately 5:45 a.m. Thursday.

Republican members of both committees dismissed questions they faced about the cost of the legislation, as well as claims millions of Americans would no longer be insured under the AHCA, CNN reports. Democratic committee members criticized the AHCA and used procedural measures to drag out the process, the report states.

Still, Rep. Kevin Brady, R-Texas, chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, stood behind the AHCA, saying, "relief is on the way," according to CNN.

"Today's markup is a critical step to providing all Americans with affordable, patient-centered healthcare that is tailored to their needs," he added.

Rep. Richard Neal, D-Mass., who is on the Ways and Means panel, was not as positive, saying, "To consider a bill of this magnitude without a CBO score is not only puzzling and concerning, but also irresponsible," according to CNN.

The House Ways and Means Committee vote comes after every major hospital entity in the U.S. expressed opposition to the measure. President Donald Trump has endorsed the AHCA.

 

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