GOP Leaders Consider Preserving Obamacare Subsidies Until After 2016

Senate Republican leaders are seriously considering legislation that would extend health insurance tax credits through the 2016 election even if the Supreme Court invalidates them later this year.

Three top Republicans told Bloomberg Politics on Tuesday they are preparing a legislative response in case their party gets what it is wishing for: A Supreme Court ruling that would eviscerate a central tenet of President Barack Obama’s health care law by declaring tax credits on the federal exchange illegal.

While such a ruling would represent a political victory for Republicans who have contended that Obama’s signature legislative initiative is an overreach, some party leaders acknowledge that the real-life consequences could make it a Pyrrhic one.

Tennessee Senator Lamar Alexander, the chairman of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, said Senate Republicans were “close to a consensus” that would “not leave 6 or 7 million Americans in the lurch” if they lose their insurance tax credits.