Obamacare ‘For the Foreseeable Future’

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House Republicans called off a vote on their Obamacare replacement bill today, sending shockwaves through the nation and the party.  After weeks of negotiation, no one expected this outcome.

“Obamacare is the law of the land. It’s going to remain the law of the land until it’s replaced. We did not have quite the votes to replace this law,” House Speaker Paul D. Ryan said.

Mr. Ryan also acknowledged that there are no immediate plans to try again on repeal, meaning Republicans will likely allow Obamacare to play out, perhaps hitting the “death spiral” of fewer customers and soaring costs — though the latest analysis by the Congressional Budget Office says that’s unlikely.  President Trump and Mr. Ryan now say they’ll now turn their attention to tax reform.

What does this mean for you and your business?  The main takeaway is this: The ACA still reigns, so continue to comply with all Obamacare mandates as previously directed.  Trump did sign an executive order in January minimizing the economic burden of Obamacare, but the law itself remains unchanged.  So should your strategy. (Employer-provided health benefits may still be tax deductible, so consult your BGW tax professional about tax breaks that might be available to you.  

Now, there is a chance that healthcare reform may still come (we’re only two months into Trump’s presidency and there is still time for this Congress to develop a new compromise), or that we’ll see the Senate begin to dismantle the fiscal parts of Obamacare using the reconciliation process that only requires a simple majority vote.  That was my guess at the beginning of Trump’s presidency, but we’ll have to wait and see how today’s political turmoil affects Republicans’ moves on healthcare.  Today’s unrest could very well signal the end of the road.  

We’ll continue to monitor the situation as it unfolds.

 

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