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Trump Says Tax Reform Bill 'Essentially Repealed Obamacare'

By Steven Porter  
   December 20, 2017

​Republican lawmakers celebrated Wednesday afternoon at the White House after passing tax overhaul bill.

President Donald Trump celebrated a tax reform overhaul Wednesday afternoon, marking the first major legislative victory of his tenure exactly 11 months after his inauguration.

Congress finalized its approval of the bill about noon Wednesday with a 224-201 vote in the House after the Senate voted 51-48 along party lines early Wednesday morning. Lawmakers then made a short trek from Capitol Hill to the White House to mark the occasion.

"I hate to say this, but we essentially repealed Obamacare because we got rid of the individual mandate, which was terrible," Trump said, joined on the South Lawn by Vice President Mike Pence, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, and Speaker of the House Paul Ryan. "And that was a primary source of funding for Obamacare."

The bill includes several other provisions that will impact healthcare organizations in 2018.

The House had already passed the reconciled bill Tuesday, but before the Senate could take the final vote, three items in the bill were deemed to be impermissible under Senate rules. So the Senate removed them, voted in favor of the tweaked final version, and sent it back to the House for another vote.

Democrats in the House lined up Wednesday morning to denounce the tax reform push, citing the need for a re-vote as evidence that Republicans had rushed the process, perhaps even failing to do their due diligence.

“Imagine what other errors we have yet to discover,” said Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-N.Y.), ranking member of the House Committee on Rules.

Steven Porter is editor at HealthLeaders.


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