Republican healthcare talks stall again

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Washington, April 6 (IANS) The Republican push to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) or Obamacare has stalled again, with party leaders shooting down the latest request from the Freedom Caucus to change the legislation.

Representative Patrick McHenry on Wednesday said the idea of allowing states to waive requirements for covering people with pre-existing conditions is a “bridge too far for our members” and cannot get enough votes to pass, the Hill magazine reported.

McHenry said lawmakers need a “cooling-off period” to think about where to go next.

“We need people to stop, take a deep breath and think through the way to yes.”

The comments came after a late-night meeting among different House Republican factions on Tuesday produced no progress.

The latest stalemate means lawmakers in the House will leave for a two-week recess without having voted on a healthcare bill, their first legislative priority of the year.

Earlier in the week, it had appeared Republicans were making progress on repealing Obamacare following the withdrawal of the bill last month, reports the Hill magazine.

Speaker Paul Ryan (Republican-Wisconsin) on Wednesday tamped down hope of a deal anytime soon.

“We can keep working this for weeks now,” Ryan said.

“We don’t have some kind of artificial deadline in front of us.”

–IANS

ksk/vt

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