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GOP Tweaks Healthcare Bill for Older Americans

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The Capitol is seen at dawn Friday March 17 2017 in Washington. Several issues key to President Donald Trump are in play next week as Congress works on the Republican health care overhaul the confirmation of a Supreme Court appointment and the inve

House Speaker Paul Ryan appeared to bow to pressure from seniors groups on Sunday, admitting for the first time that his healthcare bill didn't do enough for those in their 60s and would have to be revised to give them more help.

"We believe that we do need to add some additional assistance to people in those older cohorts", Ryan said of the bill, known as the American Health Care Act, on "Fox News Sunday".

Ryan and Trump can only afford to lose 21 GOP votes in the House.

"We feel like we're on track", Ryan said, "and we're right where we want to be".

Despite the tweaks Ryan said the bill needs, he added that he feels "very good" about the legislation's progress and where things now stand. The bill adds complicated tax issues, health savings accounts, seemingly arbitrary tax credits and other obstacles including the re-institution of rescission, that make having to deal with already debilitating health issues exponentially more complex and hard.

"And the reason I feel so good about this is the president has become a great closer. He's the one who has helped negotiate changes to this bill with members from all over our caucus".

"That is among the things we're looking at doing, yes", Ryan replied cagily.

"It's a fine needle that needs to be thread, there's no doubt about it", Price told ABC's "This Week".

Changes that the House Republicans are considering include helping people in their 50s and 60s, who, according to a recent analysis by the Congressional Budget Office, will see sharp increases in premiums in 10 years, compared with what they would pay under the existing plan.

Cruz said during an appearance on the CBS's Face the Nation that the House bill falls far short of repealing all the Obamacare mandates and taxes, and that "it doesn't fix the problem" of rising premiums and overall costs to consumers.

"Until we bring the bill to the floor we are always making improvement", Ryan said.

"We're going to make good on that promise", he said.

"It's fixable, but it's going to take a lot of work", Cotton said on CNN's "State of the Union".

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