They're up with a new set of FAQs about the health care bill, and as the health care Twitters noted, it no longer says people will never be charged more for pre-existing conditions (as the old version did). But what's also striking is how defensive the new version is. Some of the questions they try to answer:
- "Will the AHCA as amended allow those with pre-existing conditions to be priced out of the market- effectively rendering those protections useless?"
- "Does the AHCA do away with critical Essential Health Benefits, such as coverage for maternity care?"
- "The CBO says AHCA increases the number of uninsured by 24 million people. Is this true?"
- "Do Republicans want to kick millions of people off of Medicaid?"
And check out how long the answer to the pre-existing pricing question is. It takes five paragraphs to walk through all the compromises and add-ons Republicans had to come up with. (Yes, they could charge higher premiums, but only for a year, and only for someone who didn't keep themselves insured, and only in states that have high-risk pools).
Between the lines: It's a reflection of how brutal the criticisms have been. Democrats had to prepare a lot of defensive answers to opponents' charges when they were writing the Affordable Care Act too — why it's not rationing, why death panels aren't real, etc. But as they found, it's not a good sign when you have to start on that note.