Legislative Actions to Repeal, Defund, or Delay the Affordable Care Act. C. Stephen Redhead, Specialist in Health Policy. Janet Kinzer, Information Research Specialist. October 22, 2015.
“Congress remains deeply divided over implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), the health reform law enacted in March 2010. Since the ACA’s enactment, lawmakers opposed to specific provisions in the ACA or the entire law have repeatedly debated its implementation and considered bills to repeal, defund, delay, or otherwise amend the law. To date, most of this legislative activity has taken place in the House, which reverted to Republican control in 2011. The Republican-led House has passed numerous ACA-related bills, including legislation that would repeal the entire law. There has been less debate in the Senate, which remained under Democratic control through 2014. Most of the House-passed ACA legislation has not been considered in the Senate. However, a few bills to amend specific elements of the ACA that attracted sufficiently broad and bipartisan support have been approved by both the House and the Senate and signed into law. Now that Republicans control both chambers of Congress, opponents of the ACA see new opportunities to pass and send to the President legislation that would change the law. Republican leaders have decided to use a special legislative process known as budget reconciliation in an effort to repeal parts of the ACA. Pursuant to the Congressional Budget Act (Budget Act), budget reconciliation allows Congress to use expedited procedures when considering legislation that would bring existing spending, revenue, and debt limit laws into compliance with the fiscal priorities set out in the annual budget resolution…”