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USA: the battle begins – Obama, Pence Rally Lawmakers for Coming ObamaCare Fight

Ken Bredemeier – VOA NEWS

U.S. President Barack Obama, a Democrat, and Republican Vice President-elect Mike Pence rallied their political colleagues in Congress on Wednesday for the coming fight over Republican efforts to repeal and replace the national health care reforms that were Obama’s signature domestic achievement.

Obama met with Democratic lawmakers, urging them to stand against attempts to undermine what Americans know as “Obamacare,” which has added 20 million people to the health insurance rolls, but sometimes left them with costly premiums.

Meanwhile, Pence huddled with Republicans who have vowed to repeal the 2010 law that required Americans to buy health insurance or pay a fine if they did not, although they have yet to agree on a replacement plan.

“Don’t rescue” Republican efforts to replace the law with something worse, Democratic lawmakers quoted Obama as saying. He leaves office in two weeks, but he has been trying to shore up support for his policies, many of which President-elect Donald Trump has vowed to overturn, including Obamacare.

Pence said he told Republican lawmakers to “be careful” as they move quickly to repeal the law that Democrats passed without a single Republican vote when they had majorities in both houses of Congress. Now that Republicans control Congress, and Trump and Pence take office January 20, repealing the law is their first legislative effort.

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