Arizona voters, politicians unsure what's next after healthcare bill dies

Posted at 6:24 PM, Mar 24, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-24 21:24:46-04

Arizona’s congressional delegation almost unanimously balked at Republican’s attempt to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, which died on Capitol Hill Friday.

Though the bill never went to a vote, only one of the state’s nine congressmen, David Schweikert, vowed to vote for the bill. The others either publically announced their refusal or wouldn’t commit to a position.

President Donald Trump specifically mentioned Arizona while speaking about the bill’s failure on Friday.

“Obamacare unfortunately will explode it’s going have a very bad year,” Trump said. “Last year you had over 100 percent increases in various places Arizona I understand was going up very rapidly again like it did last year . Last year was 116 percent, many places 50, 60, 70 percent, I guess it averaged. Whatever the average was -- very, very high.”

In Arizona, the Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare, is credited with insuring 500,000 more people. That’s the good.

The bad: Some in the state have seen considerable rate increases and have very few coverage options in the public marketplace.  

Phoenix retiree Vicky Elleray said she had to take a part-time job to cover the increased cost. She retired in 2010 and said she was paying about $250 a month for insurance.

The cost now: $958.

Elleray said she hoped Republicans would have followed through on their promise to repeal and replace the current healthcare law.

“I'm angry that Washington can't get their act together and work as a team,” she said. “I'm ok with them scrapping it and starting from scratch. Let's do it right.”