Salt Lake City, Utah- (ABC4 Utah) – If you think the effort to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act is dead, think again.
Republican senators are still determined.
Texas Senator Ted Cruz was in Utah over the weekend for a campaign stop, but he also commented on the health care situation.
He says republicans must keep the campaign promise to repeal Obamacare.
The republican health care effort suffered a major defeat in the Senate last week, but Cruz says it’s far from over.
“Rumors of the Obamacare repeals death are greatly exaggerated,” said Cruz, (R) Texas.
He says there’s a lot at stake if his colleagues don’t act.
“We can, and we must get it done. For seven years republicans have been campaigning, promising to repeal Obamacare. If we fail to deliver on this, I think the credibility of the party is deeply, deeply damaged,” said Cruz.
Cruz says the top priority is to lower premiums.
“You lower premiums with more competition, more choice, more options,” Cruz said.
He says that would be a win for everyone, but Jason Stevenson, with Utah Health Policy Project says not so much.
“The way that the Cruz amendment brings premiums down is it turns health insurance into Swiss cheese, so it doesn’t cover anything. And sure, if you buy insurance that doesn’t cover anything it’s going to cost a lot less,” said Stevenson.
Stevenson is also disputing a score from the Department of Health and Human Services.
It claims the senator’s amendment will increase coverage by 2.2 million, and lower premiums by $7,000 a year.
“Unfortunately, I don’t think we can trust anything coming out of the Department of Health and Human Services these days. They are releasing a lot of misinformation, they are twisting the facts. I really think that’s a garbage analysis,” Stevenson said.
The Senate is working through the first two weeks of the August recess. Health care isn’t expected to come up during that time. If it does resurface, it will likely happen after the break.