A supporter of the House Republican leadership's ObamaCare replacement bill joined "Shepard Smith Reporting" to defend it against its critics.

Congressman Buddy Carter (R-Ga.), who is on one of the committees involved in crafting the legislation, said the American Health Care Act is the "beginning of creating what's going to be an affordable ... patient-centered health care [system]."

Shepard Smith noted that critics of the bill, especially from conservative quarters, say it replaces ObamaCare with another set of entitlements and penalties.


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Carter disagreed, saying the piece of the bill that some are criticizing as a reverse of ObamaCare's individual mandate penalty is a "reward" for having insurance.

Carter, a Port Wentworth pharmacist, said ObamaCare continues to "fail" and added that 16 counties in Tennessee are the latest in the nation to lose all of their government marketplace coverage options.

Smith told Carter that the new bill is in danger of failing to successfully pass Congress, partially because of other Republicans.

Senators Shelley Moore Capito (R-West Virginia), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) have all reportedly said they will not support the bill because of its affect on Medicaid.

On the conservative side of the Senate, Sens. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas) are concerned that it does not go far enough to replace ObamaCare with free market solutions.

Carter said the new bill does not "pull the rug out" from anyone, and contended that Medicaid is supposed to be a safety net, not meant for "able-bodied" people as it is now.


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