All three congressmen from Northeast Georgia voted 'yes' in Thursday's health care vote in Washington.
9th District Congressman Doug Collins, 7th District Congressman Rob Woodall and Congressman Jody Hice of the 10th district, all Republicans, voted in favor of the bill.
Among other things, the bill would eliminate tax penalties from President Barack Obama's law which has clamped down on people who don't buy coverage, and it erases tax increases in the Affordable Care Act on higher-earning people and the health industry. It cuts the Medicaid program for low-income people and lets states impose work requirements on Medicaid recipients.
“The AHCA is not perfect, but repairing the damage of Obamacare, lowering costs, and protecting people with pre-existing conditions is critical to the future of this country, and this legislation is a strong first step. The latest amendment, which dedicates an additional $8 billion to reduce costs for patients with pre-existing conditions, strengthens that commitment," Hice said. "Today’s (Thursday's) passage of the AHCA is only the beginning of a long legislative process to fully repeal Obamacare and its harmful policies, which have proven to be disastrous for our health care system. I am proud to be at the forefront of this fight and follow through on the promises we've made to the American people."
The legislation would also transform Obama's subsidies for millions buying insurance - largely based on people's incomes and premium costs - into tax credits that rise with consumers' ages.
"Obamacare saddled businesses and individuals with mandates that robbed them of their freedom to choose health care options that make sense for them," Collins said. "Our families, our workers and our economy have born the weight of bureaucratized medicine for too long."
The bill would also block federal payments to Planned Parenthood for a year, considered a triumph by many Republicans.
"The American Health Care Act removes that burden and demands compassion for both the healthy and vulnerable, the born and the unborn," Collins said.
Statewide, Georgia's 14 congressmen were split along party lines, with all 10 Republicans voting in favor, and all 4 Democrats voting against.
"I have seen the grief that Obamacare has brought to northeast Georgians and have worked for my entire tenure in Congress to repeal this destructive law. Republicans promised to repeal Obamacare, and the House voted to keep that promise today (Thursday)," Collins said. I agree with the President’s call this week for us to repeal Obamacare now, and I look forward to the Senate’s getting to work on this crucial bill."
In a statement, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., called the House vote "an important step" to repealing Obama's law and said, "Congress will continue to act on legislation to provide more choices and freedom in health care decisions."
Associated Press contributed to this story.