clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Joe Biden is coming out of retirement to fight the GOP health bill

North American International Auto Show Features Latest Car Models Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

Former Vice President Joe Biden will be back in Washington, DC, this week to protest the Republican plan to replace Obamacare — just one day before the House is scheduled to vote on the health bill.

Biden will be joining House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi on the steps of the Capitol Building Wednesday to speak out against the GOP health bill that, thus far, is estimated to cover millions fewer people. The rally will feature Americans who have benefited from the Affordable Care Act, Politico reported.

The House is gearing up to vote on the American Health Care Act on Thursday — the seven-year anniversary of Obamacare being signed into law. On Wednesday, the bill will be marked up by the House Rules Committee, where House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) is expected to submit a manager’s amendment — a package of changes in order to make the health bill passable on the House floor. What those changes will look like specifically is still under wraps, but over the weekend Ryan indicated that the bill needs to do more for seniors.

As is, Ryan has acknowledged that the health bill cannot pass the House. Last week the bill received a devastating score from the Congressional Budget Office, which estimated 24 million people would likely lose insurance because of the replacement plan. Among those most impacted would be older and sicker Americans.

While House Democrats don’t have leverage in the House to stop the bill on their own, Republicans have been divided on the replacement plan. More extreme conservative members of the House are decrying the bill as “Obamacare lite,” calling for a faster reduction of government spending and more cuts to Medicaid. But moderate Republicans, especially those from states that have expanded Medicaid, disagree and say the bill needs to ensure the coverage of their constituents.

Meanwhile, as Republican political infighting plays out, Democrats are planning a week of protest. Obamacare’s favorability has been at an all-time high in recent months, and Republican lawmakers who went home for town hall meetings last month have been hearing an earful from angry constituents expressing concerns over the replacement plan.

Wednesday will be Biden’s first major political appearance since President Donald Trump’s inauguration in January. There will be another rally in Washington on Thursday, where Progressive Caucus co-chair Rep. Keith Ellison is scheduled to speak.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for Vox Recommends

Get curated picks of the best Vox journalism to read, watch, and listen to every week, from our editors.