What we're reading, January 6, 2017: some Democrats are appealing to the GOP to consider bipartisan efforts to overhaul Obamacare instead of repealing it; enrollment for Affordable Care Act plans is up 2.3% over last year; and Democrats demand an ethics probe into Tom Price's stock trades.
Some Democrats, led by Hillary Clinton’s running mate, Senator Tim Kaine, D-Virginia, are appealing to the GOP to consider a bipartisan effort to overhaul the Affordable Care Act (ACA) instead of completely repealing it. According to The New York Times, the opportunity for cooperation could be short lived. If Republicans go forward with the repeal, those same Democrats willing to work on an overhaul will be uncooperative when it comes to creating a replacement plan further down the road.
Meanwhile, enrollment in the ACA keeps rolling along. Sign-ups for coverage in ACA plans are up 2.3% over the same time last year, with 8.8 million people signed up through HealthCare.gov as of December 31, according to Bloomberg. This number only includes sign-ups through the exchange site run by the federal government. Sign-ups in California, New York, and other states that run their own systems were not included in the tally.
As the parties fight it out over the ACA, Democrats are also paying attention to President-elect Donald J. Trump’s nominees for various positions in his administration. Reuters reported that Democrats are demanding an ethics probe into Trump’s pick for HHS, Georgia Congressman Tom Price. The Democrats are calling on the Office of Congressional Ethics to investigate Price’s stock trades—over the last 4 years, he bought and sold more than $300,000 in stocks in biomedical and pharmaceutical companies. During that time, he also sponsored legislation that could have influenced those companies’ shares.