SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - Increasing accessibility, lowering costs and focusing on patients—those are three things Georgia Congressman Buddy Carter says the GOP's new health care plan provides.
That's surprising given the fact that Senator Tom Cotton, a Republican, told his colleagues in the House to start over on the bill.
Carter disagreed and said this is the measure he believes will replace Obamacare. A busy week in Washington ended with Republican leaders unveiling their initial plans at repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act. Rep. Carter called the former President's landmark legislation a, quote, "total failure."
"It is imploding as we speak and unless we rescue healthcare we are going to be in a mess," said Rep. Carter.
Rep. Carter said 70 percent of the nearly 20 million people afforded healthcare under that plan were swallowed up by Medicaid. Dissolving that Medicaid expansion is where most Republicans disagree.
"They are able-bodied adults and that is not what Medicaid is for. Medicaid is a safety net," said Rep. Carter.
This new plan gives tax credits to families who will no longer qualify for Medicaid. Those credits will be based off age and family size. The big thing he wants his constituents to know: no one will lose coverage.
"We're not eliminating anyone. We're not pulling the rug out from underneath anyone. We are trying to make sure we have a stable transition for everyone," said Rep. Carter.
The American Healthcare Act, unlike the Affordable Care Act, is not a product for consumers. Instead, it creates the marketplace and encourages competition. Carter said the federal government will partner with states and get away from a cookie-cutter system.
Carter said there are parts of this bill he would personally change a bit. Ultimately, he voted for it as is in committee hearings. He says he'll do the same on the floor.
This is the first of three phases to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.