Congress Prepares to Battle Over 'Obamacare'

The Republican-controlled Congress is lining up votes to repeal 'Obamacare.'

— -- The GOP-led House and Senate return to Washington on Tuesday to start dismantling President Obama’s signature health care law.

Republicans, who vowed during the election season to replace the Affordable Care Act, are planning early votes to repeal elements of the law in the first days of the Trump administration. But they plan to phase out the law over several years, giving them time to craft a comprehensive replacement.

Meanwhile, Democrats are digging in, vowing to oppose major changes.

Republicans voted dozens of times to repeal the law under Obama, going so far last year as to send him repeal legislation, which he vetoed.

Democrats warn that some of the approximately 20 million Americans insured under “Obamacare” could lose coverage with Republicans actions, though House Republicans aim to provide “universal access” to health care for Americans seeking insurance, according to a House GOP leadership aide.

“The ball is in their court,” Pelosi said of Republicans on Monday.

Roughly 6.4 million Americans signed up for 2017 Affordable Care Act health care plans in December, according to the Obama administration.

Trump, Ryan and House GOP leaders favor keeping some elements of “Obamacare,” including a requirement that insurers cover existing conditions and one that allows children to stay on their parents’ health care plans until they turn 26.

“It happens to be one of the strongest assets,” Trump said about the existing condition provision in an interview with CBS’s “60 Minutes” shortly after winning the election.