The Affordable Care Act lays out 10 categories of "essential health benefits" that must be included in all insurance policies — including mental health care, and maternity and newborn care. The Republican proposal doesn't repeal that essential benefits package, which can drive up the cost of insurance. So the CBO concludes that the tax credits under the Republican proposal aren't sufficient to persuade many people to buy high-priced insurance.
"For many lower-income people, the new tax credits under the legislation would tend to be smaller than the premium tax credits under current law," the agency said in its analysis released Monday. It concludes "fewer lower-income people would obtain coverage through the non-group market under the legislation than under current law."
Republicans will have a hard time stripping out the benefits that are included in the current health care law, according to IHPI member Nicholas Bagley, a professor of law at the U-M. Democrats certainly won't vote to water them down, he says, and Republicans don't have a big enough majority in the Senate to overcome a Democratic filibuster.