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Inside the Beltway

  • Years of Attack Leave Obamacare a More Government-Focused Health Law New York Times by Robert Pear — The Affordable Care Act was conceived as a mix of publicly funded health care and privately purchased insurance, but Republican attacks, culminating this month in the death of a mandate that most Americans have insurance, are shifting the balance, giving the government a larger role than Democrats ever anticipated. And while President Trump insisted again on Tuesday that the health law was "essentially" being repealed, what remains of it appears relatively stable and increasingly government-funded. In short, President Barack Obama's signature domestic achievement is becoming more like what conservatives despise — government-run health care — thanks in part to Republican efforts that are raising premiums for people without government assistance and allowing them to skirt coverage.

  • Health Care Fights Could Complicate 2018 Funding Deal The Hill by Nathaniel Weixel — A host of health care issues could complicate a deal to fund the government in what will be a hectic January for Congress. Lawmakers agreed to a short-term continuing resolution that funds the government through Jan. 19. When they return, they will face a number of dicey issues with two weeks to reach a new full-year funding deal. Among the big issues are finding a path to long-term funding for the Children's Health Insurance Program and community health centers, a priority for Democrats. In the Senate, Republicans plan to take up two bills to help shore up Obamacare insurance markets. But that will be a hard sell in the House, where conservatives oppose those measures.

  • Poll: Nearly One-Third of Americans Think Trump Repealed Obamacare The Hill by Rachel Roubein — Nearly one-third of Americans believe President Trump has repealed Obamacare, according to a new The Economist–YouGov poll. Last week, Trump claimed the tax bill — which has since been signed into law — "essentially" repeals the Affordable Care Act. The Republican bill to overhaul the tax system eliminates the fine Americans pay for foregoing health insurance, known as the individual mandate.  More Republicans, 44 percent, believe Trump has repealed Obamacare, compared to the 27 percent of Democrats and 27 percent of independents who believe he has eliminated President Obama's signature health-care law.

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