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Representative Lee Terry of Nebraska broke away from the Republican mantra of “repeal and replace” yesterday, admitting that the GOP does actually have any plan to replace the Affordable Care Act.

Terry made the admission during an interview with Think Progress on Thursday morning, shortly before the Supreme Court ruling was released.

“The mantra for a while has been ‘repeal and replace.’ Is there an idea of what the replace would be yet?” reporter Scott Keyes asked Terry.

“No,” Terry replied. “We want to take it in a very deliberate, open approach and take everybody’s ideas.”

Think Progress has a transcript of the full exchange:

KEYES: If it does ultimately all get struck down, what do we do for 57 million people who have pre-existing conditions?
TERRY: We’re going to work on that. We’re going to do it by looking at first, how do we lower health care costs, how do we make the system more efficient and less costly.
KEYES: Are there any ideas on how to do that?
TERRY: There’s going to be lots of ideas. We just have to accept all of them.
KEYES: Do we have any yet?
TERRY: We’re going to hold hearings, we’re going to invite experts. This is not going to be a closed process at all. It’s going to be completely open where we take as many ideas for reform as we can get and then we’ll see what it takes to deal with those that need more attention if they have significant pre-existing. So we’re going to deal with all of those issues.
KEYES: The mantra for a while has been “repeal and replace.” Is there an idea of what the replace would be yet?
TERRY: No. We want to take it in a very deliberate, open approach and take everybody’s ideas.

Terry is not the first Republican to admit that the GOP doesn’t have a plan to fix America’s health care system if President Obama’s reform is repealed. On Wednesday, Rush Limbaugh claimed that he received a call from House Speaker John Boehner which “made it clear that repeal — and not repeal and replace, but repeal — was going to be the focal point for the House Republicans.”

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Sen. Chuck Grassley

Reprinted with permission from DailyKos

Last year, Senate Republicans were already feeling so desperate about their upcoming midterm prospects that they rushed to wish Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa a speedy and full recovery from COVID-19 so that he could run for reelection in 2022. The power of incumbency is a huge advantage for any politician, and Republicans were clinging to the idea of sending Grassley—who will be 89 when the '22 general election rolls around—back to the upper chamber for another six-year term.

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