Santorum ‘Shocked’ GOPers Don’t Have Obamacare Replacement Ready (VIDEO)

Former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA) said he was “shocked” to see Republicans rushing to repeal the Affordable Care Act without a replacement for the law ready to take immediate effect.

In an appearance Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union,” the former Republican presidential candidate said he understood “there’s a big fight about repeal and replace,” but was surprised Congressional Republicans had only prepared in advance to carry out the repeal.

“There is a lot of discussion going on right now in the House and Senate right now as to how to do that. I’m frankly shocked that they don’t have a plan, that they haven’t really prepared for this,” he said. “I know it is not going to be an easy thing to do, but they should have put a little bit more work into it, than now, here in the interim, trying to figure out a plan forward.”

Specifically, Santorum said, he was surprised Republicans hadn’t planned to reverse the huge expansion of Medicaid enrollment authorized by the Affordable Care Act, which he said was responsible for health care coverage for millions of Americans.

“It was always going to be difficult because the vast majority of people who got on to Obamacare, the millions of people who were added, were not on Obamacare, they were on Medicaid. So there is a huge expansion of Medicaid that’s occurred,” he said.

“So how are you going to unwind that and transition people to the private sector?” he continued. “I know there has been thinking about it. But no one, at least to my knowledge to date, has a real clear plan for how to do that. And that is a big problem.”

There have been a slew of plans to replace Obamacare presented by individual Republicans, including from many who claim no one will lose insurance as a result of the law’s repeal. But there is no clear, united path forward for party leaders.

Watch below via CNN (Santorum begins at 5:04)

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Matt Shuham is a news writer for TPM. He was previously assistant editor of The National Memo and managing editor of the Harvard Political Review. He is available by email at mshuham@talkingpointsmemo.com and on Twitter @mattshuham.
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