The US Capitol is seen in Washington, DC, on May 4, 2017. (Photo by AFP)
A bipartisan group of governors has criticized a House GOP healthcare bill, arguing that it threatens coverage for the most vulnerable.
The Democratic and Republican governors wrote a letter to the Senate on Friday, calling for a bipartisan approach where both parties can work together.
The letter was signed by Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf (D), Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R), Montana Gov. Steve Bullock (D), Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval (R), Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper (D), Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker (R) and Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards (D).
In their letter, the governors agreed that the US healthcare system needed to be reformed, but added, “We feel that true and lasting reforms are best approached by finding common ground in a bipartisan fashion.”
They said that improvements should “include controlling costs and stabilizing the market that will positively impact the coverage and care of millions of Americans, including many who are dealing with mental illness, chronic health problems, and drug addiction.”
However, the new bill “does not meet these challenges,” they added.
“It calls into question coverage for the vulnerable and fails to provide the necessary resources to ensure that no one is left out, while shifting significant costs to the states.”
On May 4, the US House of Representatives narrowly passed legislation with 217 to 213 votes to repeal and replace former President Barack Obama’s signature health insurance program, known as Obamacare.
Republicans have always criticized Obamacare as an excessive government intrusion into the healthcare market and contended that it was harming economic growth by burdening businesses.
Obama, however, defended his popular plan for American insurers.
The Affordable Care Act was designed to increase health insurance quality and affordability, lower the uninsured rate by expanding insurance coverage and reduce the costs of healthcare.
It introduced mechanisms including mandates, subsidies, and insurance exchanges. The law requires insurers to accept all applicants, cover a specific list of conditions and charge the same rates regardless of pre-existing conditions or sex.

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