http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry...24fe4b0026db1dc423b?ncid=inblnkushpmg00000009 "Apparently yanking away the funds that allow millions of people to get health insurance isn’t enough for some House Republicans. Now they also want to gut the Affordable Care Act’s protection for people with pre-existing conditions. Rep. Tom MacArthur (R-N.J.) on Tuesday formally unveiled an amendment to the American Health Care Act, the bill to repeal Obamacare that Republicans tried to get through the House last month. The amendment, which HuffPost’s Matt Fuller first reported last week, is the product of negotiations among key Republicans, including Vice President Mike Pence. A main goal of the proposal is to win over conservative House members who last month opposed the GOP repeal bill because, in their view, it still left too much of the 2010 health care law in place. Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), chairman of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, helped to craft the amendment. And although he has not yet declared support for it publicly, a few other conservatives have signaled they may be ready to switch from no to yes. It’s easy enough to see why. If enacted, it would allow states to re-create the conditions that existed before the Affordable Care Act took effect ― a time when insurance premiums were cheaper, chiefly because insurers didn’t have to pay the big medical bills of people with serious conditions." This is the thing that made me almost fall of my chair though... https://www.vox.com/2017/4/25/15429982/gop-exemption-ahca-amendment "House Republicans appear to have included a provision that exempts Members of Congress and their staff from their latest health care plan. The new Republican amendment, introduced Tuesday night, would allow states to waive out of Obamacare’s ban on pre-existing conditions. This means that insurers could once again, under certain circumstances, charge sick people higher premiums than healthy people. Republican legislators liked this policy well enough to offer it in a new amendment. They do not, however, seem to like it enough to have it apply to themselves and their staff. A spokesperson for Rep. Tom MacArthur (R-N.J.) who authored this amendment confirmed this was the case: members of Congress and their staff would get the guarantee of keeping these Obamacare regulations. Health law expert Tim Jost flagged me to this particular issue. A bit of background is helpful here. Obamacare requires all members of Congress and their staff to purchase coverage on the individual market, just like Obamacare enrollees. The politics of that plank were simple enough, meant to demonstrate that if the coverage in this law were good enough for Americans than it should be good enough for their representations in Washington. That’s been happening for the past four years now. Fast-forward to this new amendment, which would allow states to waive out of key Obamacare protections like the ban on pre-existing conditions or the requirement to cover things like maternity care and mental health services. If Congressional aides lived in a state that decided to waive these protections, the aides who were sick could be vulnerable to higher premiums than the aides that are healthy. Their benefits package could get skimpier as Obamacare’s essential health benefits requirement may no longer apply either. This apparently does not sound appealing because the Republican amendment includes the members of Congress and their staff as a protected group who cannot be affected by this amendment. You can see it on the sixth page of the amendment, although it is admittedly hard to spot. The Obamacare section that requires legislators to buy on the individual market is section 1312(d)(3)(D). And if you look at the Republican amendment, and the list of who cannot be included in this waiver? It includes Section 1312(d)(3)(D)." Seriously? WTH?! How do you even try to defend something so craven?!!