Sen. Ted Cruz's Health Care Compromise May Be Down But Not Out.

WASHINGTON -- Texas Sen. Ted Cruz’s controversial proposal to let insurers sell skimpy health insurance plans may have failed in a procedural vote late Tuesday. But, as the Senate takes up a dizzying number of amendments this week in its bid to overhaul the Affordable Care Act, it’s not dead -- yet.Cruz’s Consumer Freedom amendment, which would allow insurers to sell bare bones policies alongside ACA-compliant plans, could be resurrected once the Senate passes a health care bill and negotiates a final compromise with the House, according to fellow Texas Sen. John Cornyn.First, the Senate has to secure 50 GOP votes on a health care measure -- a goal that’s remained out of reach amid disagreements between conservative and moderate Republicans. The Senate has so far voted down two major health care proposals, including one on Wednesday from Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., that would have repealed major parts of Obamacare and given lawmakers two years to craft a replacement.In absence of widespread agreement on a comprehensive plan, Cornyn indicated the Senate is likely to pass a so-called “skinny repeal” that could nix Obamacare’s individual and employer mandates, along with its taxes, such as on medical devices. Even those details, however, are still being worked out as the fate of the American healthcare system hangs in the balance.“This is a high wire act, the whole thing,” Cornyn said on Wednesday, a day after the Senate Republicans narrowly cleared a procedural hurdle to begin debating the overhaul. “What we’re trying to do is find a way that unites our conference.”  Continue reading...

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