Dismantling Affordable Care Act Hurts Some Constituencies More Than Others

Congressman Gene Green of Houston says the House bill that dismantles much of the Affordable Care Act affects his constituency especially hard. Although it faces an uncertain future in the Senate, the current GOP plan would undo the mostly federally-funded Medicaid expansion, which provided coverage to about 11 million newly-eligible low-income Americans.

Congressman Gene Green of Houston is frustrated with his colleagues in Washington who voted to dismantle much of the Affordable Care Act.

“The secret of insurance is you spread the risk. You have to have people who are diabetics. They’re the higher-risk ones. But you also have hopefully a lot of people who are well and who don’t need health care at that particular moment.”

Congressman Kevin Brady of The Woodlands says the new bill not only rescues millions of Americans from Obamacare's taxes and collapsing health care market, it lays the foundation for a health care system based on an approach that will lower costs, expand choices, and increase access to care. But Green says that doesn’t work in his district.

“In our district, if you say ‘well, we’re not going to get a subsidy because you can’t afford your premium — we’re going to give you a tax cut.’ In a higher income community, those tax cuts are great. But if you have a district like I have, a lot of people don’t make enough money to even pay some income tax.”

Green says Congress usually reviews laws to see whether any tweaks are needed. But he says over the last six to seven years, Obamacare couldn’t be improved because Republicans were in the majority and tried 65 times to repeal it. Green appeared on “Houston Matters.”

Subscribe to Today in Houston

Fill out the form below to subscribe our new daily editorial newsletter from the HPM Newsroom.

* required