GOP health plan for pre-existing conditions spawns worries

WASHINGTON (AP) -- From cancer to addiction, doctors and patient groups are warning that the latest Republican health care bill would gut hard-won protections for people with pre-existing medical conditions. Some GOP moderates who may seal the legislation's fate are echoing those concerns. In a strongly worded statement this week, the American Medical Association said the Republican protections "may be illusory.

Personal tragedy shaped congressman's effort on health care

WASHINGTON (AP) -- New Jersey Rep. Tom MacArthur has experienced personal tragedy and understands the need for health insurance. "I lost my mother at 4 years old. My father had no insurance and I watched him until I was in college pay off medical bills," says the two-term Republican lawmaker. Years later, MacArthur suffered the anguish over the death of his 11-year-old daughter, Gracie. "We had over $1 million of medical bills.

Fears of losing pre-existing conditions protection under GOP

WASHINGTON (AP) -- From cancer to addiction, doctors and patient groups are warning that the latest Republican health care bill would gut hard-won protections for people with pre-existing medical conditions. Some GOP moderates who may seal the legislation's fate are echoing those concerns. In a strongly worded statement this week, the American Medical Association said the Republican protections "may be illusory.

Congress settles for stopgap to avoid government shutdown

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Congress took the easy way out to keep the government open on the eve of Donald Trump's 100th day in office, passing a weeklong stopgap spending bill Friday that amounted to more of a defeat for the president than a victory. Lawmakers cleared the measure easily and Trump signed it with just hours to spare before the shutdown deadline at midnight.

Short of support, House won't vote on health bill this week

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The House won't vote on Republican legislation scuttling much of President Barack Obama's health care law until at least next week, a GOP leader said Thursday. The decision deals a setback to the White House, which has pressured congressional Republicans to pass the bill by Saturday -- President Donald Trump's 100th day in office. "As soon as we have the votes, we'll vote on it," House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif.

Plan to give health care to every Californian moves forward

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) -- California lawmakers pushed forward Wednesday with a proposal that would substantially remake the health care system of the nation's most populous state by replacing insurance companies with government-funded health care for everyone. The idea known as single-payer health care has long been popular on the left and is getting a new look in California as President Donald Trump looks to replace former President Barack Obama's health care law.

Conservatives back revised health bill, GOP moderates balk

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The moribund Republican health care bill received a jolt of life Wednesday when the conservative House Freedom Caucus endorsed a revised version of the measure. But a leading GOP moderate criticized the reshaped legislation as a conservative exercise in "blame-shifting and face-saving" that wasn't winning new support from party centrists, leaving its fate unclear.

Insurer Anthem hands feds deadline on crucial ACA subsidies

Health insurers are pressing President Donald Trump and Congress to guarantee a crucial customer subsidy for the Affordable Care Act's shaky insurance exchanges, and one of the biggest carriers has thrown in its participation as bargaining chip. Blue Cross-Blue Shield insurer Anthem covers more than 1 million people on the exchanges and said Wednesday that it's planning to return next year.

The Latest: GOP offers stopgap bill to fund government

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Latest on efforts in Congress to repeal the health care law and agree on a spending bill to keep the government open (all times local): 11:30 p.m. Republicans controlling the House have unveiled a stopgap bill to keep the government open past a shutdown deadline of midnight Friday.

Insurer Centene commits to shaky ACA exchanges for 2018

One health insurer is eager to dive back into the Affordable Care Act's troubled insurance exchanges next year, even as competitors waver and President Donald Trump tweets doom about the law's future. Centene Corp. said Tuesday that its exchange enrollment has swelled 74 percent since last year, up to nearly 1.2 million people.

Hardball health care option may cost Trump and taxpayers

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Counting down to a budget deadline, the White House has toyed with a hardball health care tactic to force Democrats to yield on President Donald Trump's priorities. The administration just might eliminate billions of dollars in disputed "Obamacare" subsidies. But a study out Tuesday from a nonpartisan group suggests that could backfire.

GOP drops US-Mexico wall demands as spending talks advance

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Congressional negotiators on Tuesday inched toward a potential agreement on a catchall spending bill that would deny President Donald Trump's request for immediate funding to construct a wall along the Mexico border. The emerging measure would increase the defense budget and eliminate the threat of a government shutdown on Trump's 100th day in office this Saturday.

French election result gives markets a start-of-week lift

LONDON (AP) -- European stock markets and the euro ratcheted higher Monday, particularly in France, after the first round of the country's presidential election saw centrist Emmanuel Macron emerge on top -- stoking hopes that he will defeat far-right Marine Le Pen in the run-off in two weeks' time. KEEPING SCORE: France's CAC 40 spiked 4.6 percent to nine-year highs of 5,290, while Germany's DAX advanced 3.2 percent to 12,427.

Possible shutdown, health care quagmire awaiting Congress

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Lawmakers returning to Washington this coming week will find a familiar quagmire on health care legislation and a budget deadline dramatized by the prospect of a protracted battle between President Donald Trump and Democrats over his border wall.

Hawaii bill giving equal access to fertility treatment dies

HONOLULU (AP) -- Hawaii lawmakers killed a bill that sought equal access to fertility treatments for gay and lesbian couples and single women. The decision came after health care lobbyists argued it was a bad idea to make insurers cover a fertility procedure for surrogate mothers that gay male couples rely on to have a child. State Sen.

Attorneys general to Trump: Don't cut drug treatment funds

The top government lawyers from 19 states are telling President Donald Trump and the Republican leaders of Congress not to pass health insurance changes that would stop the flow of federal drug treatment money. A letter sent Friday by a group of attorneys general for 19 states plus Washington D.C., is the latest in a series of actions from Democrats who hold those offices to oppose Trump's policies and actions.

Future of revamped health care bill remains dubious in House

WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Donald Trump on Friday downplayed the significance of pushing Republican health care legislation through the House next week, a retreat from more bullish White House pronouncements a day earlier, which had gotten a skeptical reception at the Capitol. In brief comments to reporters Friday, Trump said the attempt to rekindle the GOP drive to repeal President Barack Obama's health care law is "coming along well.

Trump's budget chief says money for border wall a must

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Money for the wall President Donald Trump wants to build along the U.S. border with Mexico must be part of the massive spending bill Congress is preparing, the White House budget director says. Additional funding also must be included to hire more immigration agents, Mick Mulvaney told The Associated Press in an interview in which he laid out the top priorities of the president.

Health care lobby pushes back on Hawaii LGBT fertility bill

HONOLULU (AP) -- Health care lobbyists in Hawaii are pushing lawmakers to kill part of a bill that would expand access to fertility treatments to same-sex couples who want to have a child. They're saying requiring insurers to cover fertility treatments for gestational carriers that male couples rely on could lead to legal problems. Under Hawaii law, insurers are required to cover one round of in vitro fertilization for some married, heterosexual couples.