Several of our supporters have sent questions about our stance on the American Health Care Act, or simply asking for more information about the draft legislation in general. Below you’ll find some of the most common questions we are seeing and our responses to them.
- What are the basics about the bill?
- What are the “three phases?”
- President Trump is trying to help. Why aren’t you helping him? (Hint: we are.)
- What are you trying to do right now? Why? How can we help?
- Do you want to kill this bill or amend it? (Hint: the President said he is committed to this bill and open to changes to make it right. We want to help make it right so it can earn our support and become law.)
- What is good about the bill? What concerns you?
- What is up with the insurance company mandates?
- What is up with the Medicaid expansion?
- What is up with the tax credits?
- The House GOP Leadership says that no more can be done in the reconciliation bill. Is that true?
- What happened with the meeting Jenny Beth had at the White House with President Trump?
- Why are we calling House Freedom Caucus members of Congress? Aren’t they with us?
- Did you do anything to help President Trump in the election? Why are you against him now? (hint: We did help, and we are not against him now)
- Why have you sent so many emails lately?
- How can I get involved?
- Hey, what’s up with the confirmation of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court? How can I help?
- Holy Cow! This is so much information!! How can I stay up to date more easily without having to read so much at one time?
1. What are the basics about the bill?
The Congressional Republican leadership has unveiled its long-awaited “ObamaCare Repeal Bill.” While it has several good elements, it does not live up to the GOP leadership’s promise to repeal ObamaCare, “root and branch.” Enacting it in its current form would leave key elements of ObamaCare in place, and would likely aggravate, rather than reduce, skyrocketing premium costs. Obamacare is a disaster and must be repealed. It is failing right now and will continue to fail. It MUST be FULLY repealed.
2. What are the “three phases?”
President Trump is committed to repealing and replacing Obamacare. He has laid out a process that includes three phases to repealing and replacing Obamacare.
Phase 1: The American Health Care Act, which is the current bill(s) in the House of Representatives. It is a reconciliation bill which only requires 51 votes to pass the United States Senate. Reconciliation bills must be related to the federal budget and federal spending. This bill does not repeal all of ObamaCare and leaves in place some of the worst parts – that are driving up the cost of health insurance. Phase 2: Reversing regulations through Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price. The Affordable Care Act aka Obamacare delegated enormous power to the Secretary of Health and Human Services. As one Secretary can create regulations, another can change them. Secretary Price is working on that. It is our understanding that HHS is working to unwind regulations even as Phase One is in process. Phase 3: A regular order bill that will repeal some other aspects of Obamacare, enact some of the regulatory changes through legislation (rather than merely administrative agency regulations), and enact other replacement options for Obamacare. This bill will require 60 votes in the Senate for cloture and to bring the bill to the floor for a final vote. That means this bill will require Democrat support to pass. Whether Democrats will vote to support such a bill or not is unknown at this point. We do know that President Trump is a good negotiator and would very likely work in such negotiations to pass it.
3. President Trump is trying to help. Why aren’t you helping him? (Hint: we are.)
In the first two months of President Trump’s presidency he is proving he is keeping his promises. We appreciate that. We hope that other politicians will follow his lead and keep the promises they made during their own campaigns.We are working to help President Trump. We have made it clear to him (Jenny Beth met with him in the White House on March 8) that we appreciate him and are trying to help him keep his promises to repeal Obamacare and to reduce the costs of health care, specifically health insurance, and stop insurance prices from skyrocketing.While President Trump wants to keep his promise to repeal ObamaCare, he’s currently relying on the bill that Speaker Paul Ryan released. Conservatives have been burned by Speaker Ryan and GOP leadership time and time again and we want to make sure that House leadership doesn’t betray President Trump.
We all agree Obamacare is a disaster and must be repealed. It is failing right now, and will continue to fail until it is repealed.
4. What are you trying to do right now? Why? How can we help?
We are watching as the process develops and updating action items almost daily. The best thing to do is to check the Get Involved page on our website at to see our daily and weekly action items. There is something for every interested activists to do. If you have 5 minutes we can help you make calls to Congress and to engage them on social media. If you have a bit more time, you can write letters to Congress, talk to your family, friends, co-workers, and neighbors about your concerns about the bill, or write letters to the editor. If you have longer, we can help you host a house party, visit a local congressional office, hold a sign waving event, or tea party rally. No matter what your preference for activism, we have something for you to do. As long as we all show up and take action based on our ability every week, we will continue to make a difference as we have over the last eight years. See the other ways to volunteer.
5. Do you want to kill this bill or amend it? (Hint: the President said he is committed to this bill and open to changes to make it right. We want to help make it right so it can earn our support and become law.)
Tea Party Patriots is a grassroots, bottom-up organization and we ask our local leaders and our full supporter base what stance we should take on various issues. Since we have fought to repeal ObamaCare for seven years, when the House Republican Leadership introduced the American Health Care Act, we quickly asked our supporters for the stance they wanted us to take. Within 90 minutes, thousands of people had replied. Fully 92% were against the current bill as it was introduced (and in its current form as of this writing). Over the next 36 hours, thousands more replied, and the opposition remained between 91 – 92% against it. If and when the bill is amended and as the situation develops, we will reach back out to ask our supporters what stance they want us to take.President Trump said he is committed to the current American Health Care Act. He promised to repeal and replace Obamacare. It is our understanding that he wants to repeal and replace in the same bill (at least as much as can possibly be done in a single bill). It is our understanding that this is the process he is working through to repeal Obamacare. President Trump also said he is open to changes to the bill to get it right. We are encouraged that he is listening to those who have concerns, and is open to amending the current bill. We want to help him and help the House Leadership amend the bill so the bill earns our support and can become law. To be clear, we want to help amend the current bill so that the promises Republicans in Congress made to repeal Obamacare turn into reality, and we want to replace Obamacare with a system based on a free market foundation rather than on the foundation on which Obamacare exists.
Unfortunately, for over a week after the bill’s rollout we heard GOP leadership say they were not willing to make major changes to the current bill. That appears to be changing, in large part because you are speaking up and President Trump is listening to your concerns about the bill.
6. What is good about the bill? What concerns you?
7. What is up with the insurance company mandates?
8. What is up with the Medicaid expansion?
9. What is up with the tax credits?
See the section on our website that goes into detail about the tax credits.
10. The House GOP Leadership says that no more can be done in the reconciliation bill. Is that true?
11. What happened with the meeting Jenny Beth had at the White House with President Trump?
Jenny Beth was invited to meet with President Trump on March 8, 2017, along with a few other leaders of conservative organizations (former Senator Jim DeMint of Heritage, former Congressman David McIntosh of Club for Growth, Mike Needham of Heritage Action, Tim Phillips of Americans for Prosperity, and Adam Brandon of FreedomWorks). Each share similar, serious concerns about the American Health Care Act, and President Trump wanted to hear them. It is refreshing to have a President who is willing to listen to our concerns. Jenny Beth took the opportunity to share our concerns over the draft legislation, and she also let him know about all of the work you – our supporters – did through Tea Party Patriots Citizens Fund to help him get elected. You (our grassroots activists) made 2 million calls into Pennsylvania, Ohio, Florida, and North Carolina, and hand wrote over 100,000 letters to voters in Pennsylvania. President Trump expressed gratitude to you for that.She reminded him that when the going got tough during the election, we continued to stand by him, even as others bailed. He thanked us for standing firm.
Jenny Beth also told him you are continuing to support him through our work helping with his nominees, and told him that more than 200 of you recently hosted house parties supporting the confirmation of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court.
Jenny Beth also made clear that we are only expressing our concerns about this bill because it doesn’t fully repeal ObamaCare, and we want to help President Trump keep his promises. He thanked us for that as well. President Trump genuinely wants to keep his promises to the American people.
The President is committed to the current bill – the American Health Care Act – and he indicated in the meeting and since the meeting that he is willing to make some changes to make it a better bill.
That’s what we are fighting for right now. We are optimistic the President and Congress will work to amend the bill to earn our support and the support of our grassroots activists. For us, ObamaCare repeal is about more than campaign slogans. It’s about putting into practice the ideas that we know work. Competition, market-driven prices, individual responsibility, federalism, and the power of consumer choice, among other aspects of the free market, powerful forces that have proven the test of time.
Without question, our limited-government principles still work. And our principles, as evidenced by recent elections, are still popular. The only question that remains is whether or not GOP Members of Congress still have the courage to act on our principles.
12. Why are we calling House Freedom Caucus Members of Congress? Aren’t they with us?
We recently sent an email alert (Wednesday, March 15) asking you to make calls to the House Freedom Caucus members. They are working with President Trump and the House Leadership to try to amend the bill to get it to the point where we enact repeal of Obamacare and replace it with a system that is based more on free market principles. Because they have been working to keep their promises they have come under attack by American Action Network, a group that is affiliated with the GOP leadership PAC. There is a $500,000 ad buy running against several of them in their home districts as well as a campaign to send 1 million negative robocalls to voters in their districts. They are standing up for our healthcare freedom even while under attack. We want them to know we appreciate it, they should keep standing strong, and that we will stand with them as they continue to work to repeal and replace Obamacare with a real replacement of Obamacare.
13. Did you do anything to help President Trump in the election? Why are you against him now? (hint: We did help, and we are not against him now)
Tea Party Patriots Citizens Fund spent considerable time and resources helping President Trump during the election. After the election, Tea Party Patriots has continued to support him throughout the transition and into the early months of his presidency. See more details about what we’ve done to help President Trump.
14. Why have you sent so many emails lately?
We are working to shift our activism efforts to be more on the offense rather than on the defense. As such, we have used our email list as a means to quickly communicate some of our action items, change the weekly approach to activism, and update you on the many actions happening in DC related to our Yellow Card Project. We have recently created an event tracking page, and we are tracking various congressional town halls, listening sessions, and mobile office hours. We also have updated our toolkits and our approach to toolkits. The site is up to date with the action items, toolkits and events pages now. We are planning to reduce the number of emails. We are also working to allow you to select an average number of emails you prefer per week or month and send specific recap emails to those who wish to have fewer emails. That is in the works and is a bit lower priority than some of the urgent and critical action items related to congressional actions we are addressing. Thank you for bearing with us and sticking with us as we have had these increased emails.
15. How can I get involved?
Check out our Get Involved page for regular updates on calls to action and various ways you can get involved. Also check out our volunteer sign up page to let us know what kinds of involvement you’d like to participate in. A member of our field team will be in touch to help you get involved. Finally, check out our events page to see if there are any events of interest near you. If you have a tea party event, or if your Congressman or Senators are having town halls, please add the event to our website so others in your area can get involved as well.
16. Hey, what’s up with the confirmation of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court? How can I help?
We are continuing to focus on Judge Neil Gorsuch’s confirmation. The hearing begins in the Senate Judiciary Committee on Monday, March 20 and likely will be a a few days long. You, our activists, have hosted over 200 house parties around the country supporting him. You are showing up at Senators’ town halls to make your voices heard supporting him. You are are making a difference here. If you want to get involved to help us see him through to final confirmation, sign up here.
17. Holy Cow! This is so much information!! How can I stay up to date more easily without having to read so much at one time?
Yes it is an incredible amount of information. Thanks for sticking with it to the end. You can join our weekly Washington Reports on Mondays at 1:00 pm eastern time. Currently those are held through gotowebinar and you can sign up here. We are looking to change that to Facebook Live but have not yet implemented it. You can also read the Washington Reports and listen to a recording of the webinar, which we post online each week. http://www.teapartypatriots.org/category/legislative-updates/If you have a local group, we also have an expanded webinar on Sunday nights for you or for a representative from your group. If you do have a group and are not connected with us, please add your group to our website to get plugged in. Someone from our support team will be in touch to get your started.
American Health Care Act One Pagers
American Health Care Act Summary
American Health Care Act Insurance Company Mandates
American Health Care Act Medicaid Expansion
American Health Care Act Advanceable, Refundable Tax Credits
American Health Care Act: Overriding the Senate Parliamentarian