Three influential committee chairmen -- Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) (Ways and Means), Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI) (Energy and Commerce), and Rep. John Kline (R-MN) (Education and Workforce) -- have formed a working group to develop an alternative to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which has been a target for repeal by the GOP since its enactment. The task force will also develop a strategy to respond if the Supreme Court strikes down ACA subsidies in the King v. Burwell case, which challenges the subsidies available to individuals who purchase insurance in federally-run health insurance marketplaces.
Republican lawmakers have attempted to repeal all or part of the ACA dozens of times, and have also sought to defund key elements of it. Critics of repeal plans have often pointed out that the GOP does not have a clearly-articulated plan to replace the law if it were to be repealed. The formation of this task force is an attempt to create a viable alternative if future repeal efforts are successful, or if the judiciary undermines the ACA.