On Monday, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released its score of the Better Care Reconciliation Act, the healthcare bill introduced by Senate Republicans last week. According to the CBO, about 22 million more people would be uninsured by 2026 if this bill became law. This is just one million less than the number of people who would lose their health insurance under the the House's version of healthcare reform approved last month.
The Senate bill isn't drastically different from the House's American Health Care Act (AHCA), which passed on May 4 and had its CBO score released on May 24. After the AHCA passed in the House, Senate Republicans began drafting their own version of healthcare reform.
On the other hand, the Senate healthcare bill would reduce the deficit by $321 billion, or about $202 billion more than the estimated savings for the House bill. The savings would largely come from deep cuts to Medicaid funding through a slower process than proposed by the House, but with more long-term cuts.
Some of the key features of the Better Care Reconciliation Act include allowing states to opt out of covering essential health benefits and withholding federal funds from Planned Parenthood for a year, which mimics the House's AHCA.
Several Republican senators have said they won't vote for the bill in its current form. (All Democrats are expected to vote against the legislation, so the GOP can only afford to lose two votes or the bill won't pass.)
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell plans to bring the legislation to the floor for debate in the upcoming days and aims to hold a vote at the end of the week, before the Senate breaks for its July 4th break. If the bill passes at the Senate level, it would go back to the House for approval.