It was one of the most compelling moments in Paul Ryan‘s CNN town hall last week—when cancer survivor and lifelong Republican Jeff Jeans explained how his diagnosis changed his mind about Obamacare. Jeans, a small business owner in Arizona, thanked President Obama for saving his life and asked Ryan how he could repeal the health care legislation without replacing it. Ryan explained that Republicans planned to replace Obamacare with high-risk pools for those Americans with pre-existing conditions.
Jeans was not impressed with that answer, later telling Fast Company that segregating people with pre-existing conditions into high-risk pools “doesn’t give the people the security they need,” results in extremely high premiums and deductibles, and that such high-risk pools haven’t worked in the past. Before the passage of the Affordable Care Act, they were only offered in 35 states, not Arizona. “What if you’re in one of the 15 states that don’t have one? What about me? Am I supposed to move to a state that offers one?”
For now, he’s crossing his fingers and hoping that a replacement takes care of Americans like him. Here’s the moment that Jeans questioned Ryan at the town hall: