Appearing on Fox News Sunday, White House Chief of Staff Reince Preibus fended off host Chris Wallace who continually pointed out that the American Health Care Act (AHCA) passed by the GOP-majority House fell far short of President Donald Trump’s campaign promises that no one would lose their insurance.
According to Priebus, what came through the House is not representative of what the final bill will look like.
“It’s up to the Senate to make improvements if they’re to be made,” Priebus told Wallace. “Everyone is excited and ready to go to work and take the time necessary to look at the bill. No one’s going to be beating down their door.”
Addressing patients with pre-existing conditions, Priebus pointed out that 176 million Americans get employer-based insurance and that they will not be affected. He added that the nine and a half million people with pre-existing conditions who fall through the cracks will keep their insurance — providing that GOP governors don’t ask for a waiver allowing them to deny coverage.
In that case, Priebus asserted, the plan provides “billions” for coverage.
“Eight billion dollars over five years,” a skeptical Wallace shot back.
Wallace then cited Congressional Budget Office estimates showing 24 million people losing their insurance by 2024, which Priebus dismissed, by saying the CBO has been “wrong before.”
“That is not taking care of everybody like the president promised,” Wallace replied. “You’re rolling back Medicaid, older people are going to end up paying five times as much or even more.”
“That’s the old bill,” Priebus parried.
“But that part of it stays,” Wallace replied.
“That’s before the Senate takes the bill and makes it even better,” Priebus promised before complaining that Wallace was “getting into the weeds.”
Watch the video below via Fox News: