High hopes for a bipartisan solution collapsed as budget bill adopted.
Senators Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Patty Murray (D-WA), leaders of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee, have found ways to collaborate and solve difficult legislative issues over the years. Optimism abounded when they declared a bipartisan effort to untangle knotty problems with the Affordable Care Act stabilization in September.
The pair sought to stabilize the ACA market to head off substantial premium increases as the midterm elections approach. The changes needed to be a part of the pending $1.3 trillion spending bill late last week.
Conservative advocates demanded inclusion of strong anti-abortion language. Democrats balked. A standoff developed and the opportunity for compromise evaporated.
Read how the potential bipartisan solution unraveled in Politico.