Obama challenges GOP to spell out Obamacare alternative

Story highlights

  • President Barack Obama said Friday he's always remained open to alternate options
  • Republicans in Congress are weighing their options for how to repeal and replace Obamacare

(CNN)President Barack Obama challenged Republicans on Friday to spell out their plan for replacing his signature health law, insisting he's open to new ideas, but casting doubt on what his political rivals can muster.

"If it works, I'm for it," Obama said during an interview with Vox, adding he would only support a Republican plan if it contains the protections that he included in the Affordable Care Act, such as barring insurance companies from withholding coverage for Americans with pre-existing conditions.
"If you can do all that cheaper than we talked about, cheaper than Obamacare achieves, and with better quality and it's just terrific, I'm for it," Obama said.
    Republicans in Congress are weighing their options for how to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, though no one, clear alternative has emerged as a consensus plan from the GOP.
    Obama insisted he's always remained open to alternate options than what's contained in his law, which passed on a narrow partisan basis in 2010.
    "From the very start, in the earliest negotiations in 2009 and 2010, I made clear to Republicans that if they had ideas that they could show would work better than the ideas we have thought of, I would be happy to incorporate item into the law. And rather than ideas, all we got was a big 'No,'" Obama said.
    "Now is the time when Republicans have to go ahead and show their cards. If in fact they have a program that would genuinely work better — they can call it whatever they want, they can call it Trumpcare, they can call it McConnellcare, they can call it Ryancare — if it works, I will be the first to say great," he said.