UPDATE 11/19/21: The revised Build Back Better Act passed the House of Representatives this morning, so I'm re-upping this for a few days. It now moves to the Senate where it will likely be tinkered with a bit more; if it passes there, it will then move back to the House for one more final vote before hopefully being signed into law by President Biden. Make sure to also read about some additional revisions to the bill made after I wrote this post.
The legislative text of the updated Build Back Better (BBB) bill is now available, and as I suspected, for all the understandable disappointment about what isn't part of it any longer, there's a lot more healthcare-related stuff in there than most people think. A lot of it gets kind of wonky or may seem like "small potatoes" to most folks, but pretty much everything in it would make a huge positive impact on those it benefits.
Well, as the long-gestating legislation finally heads into the endgame this week, there's been a last-minute rush to add to & change some provisions of the bill before it actually gets voted on, and earlier today, the House Rules Committee released a revised/updated version of the bill, including a handy comparison version which shows exactly what legislative language has changed since the prior version.
Many of these changes are either simple grammatical or wording tweaks to make sure it all passes legal muster, while others simply provide clarification. Other changes involve simply increasing or decreasing the amount of federal money which would be allocated to one program or another.
A couple of hours ago, the Biden White House posted a completely updated version of what's being described as a "framework" for his Build Back Better policy agenda, which has been significantly pared down from the more ambitious version last spring. There are three main reasons for this: Congressional/Senate Republicans as a whole; Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia; and Senator Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona.
Regular readers may have noticed that I haven't checked in on the status of #BidenCare (aka #ACA 2.0) since way back in early August. There's several reasons for this: At first I was swamped with my COVID vaccination/case/death rate project; then, more recently, I had to scramble to get my annual Rate Change project up to date.
Both of these have indeed monopolized my time, but the main reason is simply that President Biden's Build Back Better (BBB) plan (which ACA 2.0 is a part of) has gotten bogged down over the past few months due to infighting and intransigence by a handful of "moderate/centrist" Democrats in the House but especially by two Democratic Senators in particular (Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona).
(Needless to say, I'm not even mentioning any Republicans in either the House or Senate, since not a single one of them is willing to support the bill.)
It seemed a bit pointless to write up a lengthy, in-depth analysis of the latest developments on the bill when what does or doesn't have a serious shot at making the final cut kept changing every few days.