Obamacare on the block as US Congress session opens today
03 January 2017
The US Congress would be back in session today, and according to leaders of both houses, the first item on the agenda would the repeal of Obamacare.
According to commentators, the Affordable Care Act, Barack Obama'a signature project, was trumpeted as a major achievement at the time it became law in March 2010.
"Today, after almost a century of trying, today after over a year of debate, today, after all the votes have been tallied, health insurance reform becomes law in the United States of America," Obama told a large, cheering crowd that day, at the White House.
But Republicans had, however, vowed to repeal the law since the day it passed, and they would soon have the means and a sympathetic president to make it happen.
"We will repeal the disaster known as Obamacare and create new health care, all sorts of reforms that work for you and your family," president-elect Donald Trump vowed last month in Orlando.
Though Trump had promised to unite a deeply divided country, the Republican Party would early on push legislation to undo Obamacare, without significant or any Democratic support.
According to a Gallup poll released yesterday, Trump would take office with less than half of Americans confident in his ability to handle an international crisis, use military force wisely or prevent major ethics lapses in his administration.
Meanwhile, leading Democrats yesterday warned of a fierce fight over Obamacare, which was expected to have 13.8 million people enrolled in the programme that aimed to provide health insurance to economically disadvantaged people and to expand coverage for others.
According to commentators, in the coming weeks, Republicans would try to steer legislation through Congress using procedures that would not require Democratic cooperation. Their bill, which had not been unveiled, would likely repeal Obamacare, but postpone the actions for two or three years while retaining some of the law's provisions.