U.S. Sen. Ben Sasse says he still holds out hope the Affordable Care Act can be repealed and replaced, but remains wary politics will prevent progress.
Sasse says the numbers work against replacement of the Affordable Care Act with only 52 Republicans in the United States Senate. It takes 60 votes to move any legislation in the chamber.
“Will we get there? I hope so,” Sasse tells Nebraska Radio Network. “I’m working hard to get there, but we need a lot more honesty and seriousness from both sides to ultimately get there.”
Attempting to move something using what is called the budget reconciliation process would only take a simple majority.
Sasse says Democrats refuse to help Republicans, because passing any health care reform would be considered a win for President Donald Trump. Sasse says Republicans also need to quit blaming on the woes of health care on the Affordable Care Act. Sasse says American health care was a mess prior to the ACA passage in 2010.
Sasse says most Americans lose health insurance when they change jobs. He says insurance must become portable, allowing Americans to keep their insurance when they accept another job or move to another state.
Republican leaders have indicated they will release their priorities for health care legislation soon.
“I’m hopeful that that will include that in-state goal of portability across job and geographic change, but I’ll admit that Washington right now is pretty preoccupied with a whole bunch of short-term soundbite cycles,” Sasse says.
AUDIO: Brent Martin reports [:45]