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Brown introduces public option for Affordable Care Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, joined his colleagues on Thursday to introduce the Consumer Health Options and Insurance Competition Enhancement (CHOICE) Act.

The senator’s office said the legislation would add a publicly operated health insurance option to the Affordable Care Act’s individual marketplaces.

Brown introduced the bill with U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-Rhode Island, while U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky, D-Illinois, introduced companion legislation in the House of Representatives.

Brown’s office said the move came as the U.S. Department of Justice, under Presdent Donald Trump, “refuses to defend the law that has extended health insurance coverage to over 20 million Americans.”

“Instead of ripping coverage away from people the way President Trump’s repeal of the Affordable Care Act would do, we should be working to expand healthcare for everyone,” Brown said in a news release.

“This bill would give people the choice to join a Medicare-like plan if they want, and it would help lower costs for everyone by increasing competition in the market.”