The GOP wants repeal and replacement for Obamacare to be as simple as possible, but its plan doesn’t offer any guarantees.
“We have to be able to say we can get it done,” House Speaker Paul Ryan told reporters Tuesday.
“If we can’t do it, we can do a lot better.”
Ryan said he has no problem with letting insurance companies sell policies for a year after the law goes into effect, but that he doesn’t want to allow states to opt out of it.
“I don’t want a state that can go ahead and opt out,” he said.
“You’ve got to make it very clear that this is the way we’re going to do it.”
Ryan and President Donald Trump have long touted the Affordable Care Act as the centerpiece of the GOP’s policy agenda, arguing that it will help the nation’s poorest citizens.
The House is expected to vote on the bill as soon as Wednesday.
Ryan, a Republican who’s been pushing the bill through Congress for years, has been a vocal opponent of Obamacare, and the White House has repeatedly blasted him for it.
While the GOP hasn’t made any promises to the public about the repeal bill, Ryan did make a promise to his caucus that the bill wouldn’t repeal Obamacare’s individual mandate.
“This is not the bill I campaigned on,” he told reporters Monday.
“It’s not what we’re about.
It’s not the agenda we’re focused on.”
In a Tuesday briefing with reporters, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said the administration will not be offering a specific number on how much the repeal effort will cost the federal government, but noted that the House will be able “to look at the CBO analysis and figure out how much it will cost.”
But Sanders also pointed out that the cost of the legislation would likely be higher than the cost to taxpayers of repealing the individual mandate, which Trump has repeatedly touted as a key part of his plan.
“The administration will make a statement tomorrow and explain the impact of that in CBO,” Sanders said.
Sanders said that the president has “never been a fan of the mandate” and that “a mandate is not a mandate.”
“I think the president wants to get this done,” she said.
The CBO score was released Monday morning, but has been delayed because of the holiday.
The nonpartisan office released its analysis of the bill, which showed that repealing the mandate would cost $772 billion over 10 years.
That figure, which included the impact on state budgets, is lower than a CBO estimate that the repeal would cost about $1.2 trillion over 10, 12 and 24 years.
Ryan said the Republican plan “takes a hard look at some of the more egregious parts of the Affordable Act,” but he noted that it’s still early in the process and that the CBO report isn’t finalized yet.
“Our goal is to get a bill that is as simple and as straightforward as possible,” he added.
Ryan added that he’s confident the House can repeal the law without harming the individual insurance market.
The administration has promised that the GOP plan would not eliminate the individual market, which will continue to be governed by state laws.
The legislation would instead repeal the individual and employer mandates, which are set to take effect next year.