As Dems prepare to debate, Bush unveils ACA replacement plan

Just as the Democratic presidential candidates are poised to square off over a host of issues in their first debate, Republican Jeb Bush has detailed one of his own major policy platforms--his plan to replace the Affordable Care Act.

Bush argues that the ACA has led to "skyrocketing healthcare premiums across the country" and that it fails to hold providers accountable for the value of care they deliver. Instead, he says, his plan would shift the responsibility to reform the system onto the states by encouraging them to guarantee access for individuals with pre-existing conditions and to make affordable health plans available.

His plan also would help Americans with out-of-pocket costs by letting them save $6,550 a year in a health savings account; give individuals a $12,000 tax break on the health benefits they receive through their employer; and enable small businesses to make tax-free contributions for their workers' individual, portable health plans.

Bush is expected to further detail his healthcare policy proposals in a speech today in New Hampshire, the Washington Post notes. So far the plan does not say how he would go about repealing the ACA.

Bush is certainly not the first GOP candidate to indicate he would repeal President Barack Obama's signature law if elected. Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has said that in lieu of the ACA, he would extend refundable tax credits to help individuals pay for private insurance and allow customers to shop for plans across state lines. Florida Sen. Scott Rubio also is in favor of offering refundable tax credits, and Donald Trump has said his ACA replacement would cover everyone but would primarily be a private plan.

The two leading Democratic candidates, meanwhile, have their own ideas. Sen. Bernie Sanders has criticized rising medication costs, even introducing legislation that would allow Medicare to negotiate prices with drug companies. Hillary Clinton, too, has outlined policies to tackle high drug prices, has detailed how she would improve the ACA and has even come out against one of the law's more unpopular provisions, the Cadillac tax.

To learn more:
- here's Bush's plan
- read the Washington Post article

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