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Pence: 'Executive Orders... Will Enable Orderly Transition' After Obamacare Repeal

WASHINGTON – While making the GOP case for repealing the Affordable Care Act today, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) emphasized that the Republican-led House won’t “pull the rug out” from anyone currently relying on Obamacare subsides for medical coverage.

Vice President-elect Mike Pence said a “series of executive orders” would help ensure an “orderly transition” to an improved healthcare law.

“Then once we repeal this law, we need to make sure that there is a stable transition to a truly patient-centered system. We want every American to have access to quality, affordable health coverage. All of the things Obamacare has kept from the American people — more choices, more control, more freedom – we want to put them back in their hands,” Ryan said during a press conference alongside Pence on Capitol Hill.

“This law has failed. It’s getting worse. Families are hurting. No one has choices. We’ve got to fix this by replacing it with something better and in that transition we want to make sure we don’t pull the rug out from anybody during that transition – that’s the point we’re all trying to make,” he added.

Pence said the incoming Trump administration plans to repeal and replace Obamacare by working with Congress and using executive actions.

“We’re going to be in the promise-keeping business. The president-elect campaigned all across this country. He gave voice to the frustrations and the aspirations of the American people. He laid out an agenda to make America great again and my message on his behalf today before this conference and before members of the Senate is that we intend to keep those promises,” Pence said.

“We’re working right now, the White House staff is, on a series of executive orders that will enable that orderly transition to take place even as the Congress appropriately debates alternatives to and replacement of Obamacare,” he added.

Ryan reiterated that the GOP does not want to “pull the rug out from people while we’re replacing this law.”

“The point is that in 2017 we don’t want people to be caught with nothing. We want to make sure that there’s an orderly transition so that the rug is not pulled out from under the families who are currently struggling under Obamacare while we bring relief,” he said.

Ryan summarized the status of the repeal process in Congress.

“As you know the Senate is going to be acting first next week then the Congress will follow, which gives us the budget resolution we need to bring the resolution through while the administration works on the executive orders that they are talking about to deliver the kind of transition relief that we’ve been talking about,” he said. “They broke the healthcare system. It’s a string of broken promises so we are going to make sure we have an orderly transition to a better system.”