But these high-risk pools were nearly universally unsuccessful before the advent of Obamacare, and the new GOP proposals drew swift criticism from many patient advocates and others.
"It will be cheaper but it won't necessarily cover anything", said Gary Claxton, a vice president of the Kaiser Family Foundation, which studies health issues.
But in a phone interview with CNN Thursday morning, Cole also cautioned that there are a lot of mixed feelings across the conference among members and aides on whether this effort could be any more successful than the first time.
"I know that our team has continued to work with members of the House in particular to see if there's a way forward", Spicer said. Well, maaaaayyyyybeeee, but both sides have been pointing fingers all along, as has Donald Trump at the White House, who accused the Freedom Caucus of perpetuating ObamaCare.
The nation's top medical groups, including the American Medical Association and the American Hospital Association, also have rejected the GOP's "repeal and replace" bill. The GOP health-care bill as it stands would instead allow states to spell out essential health benefits.
Since then, several lawmakers have been working to amend the bill to win support from holdouts in the conservative House Freedom Caucus and from more centrist lawmakers, many of whom were loath to support legislation that would leave millions more Americans without health insurance.
But other Republicans have expressed skepticism related to progress on the health care front, pointing to the hurdle of an internal divide between moderate and conservative GOP House members that stalled the initial attempt to repeal and replace President Barack Obama's signature legislation.
The second-ranking House Democrat, Representative Steny Hoyer, told his fellow Democrats that they should only support such a short-term measure if a deal on long-term bill is reached and only finishing touches remained, the aide said. Less obviously, more chaos in the health care insurance markets will cause dysfunctional decisions that could damage the Trump administration's efforts to create more and better jobs. It's unclear whether those 20 votes would be enough to get health care through the chamber. And, Tam, what do you make of that from Trump?
MacArthur's proposal would allow states to seek waivers from certain federal requirements for health coverage.
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So yes, national Republicans should look the the "Maine model" as they consider health care policy, but not as a success story.
"The question is whether it can get 216 votes in the House and the answer isn't clear at this time".
Sticklers for details, the group of about three dozen lawmakers - who, for the most part, opposed the Republican leadership's AHCA when it was introduced two months ago - won't make a decision without having reviewed the text. "There's nothing about this that shouldn't be seen as a weakening of the essential protections".
But the amendment also tries to win over conservatives in the House Freedom Caucus by giving states a way to opt out of some insurance regulations. "That being said, if it's important enough to the Democrats, we'd be happy to talk to them about including that in sort of some type of compromise".
For example, premiums could rise $140,510 more for those with metastatic cancer, $26,180 for rheumatoid arthritis, $18,440 for congestive heart failure, $17,060 for pregnancy and $4,270 for asthma, the study said.
With those changes appearing more likely to be added to the health care bill, moderate members may be compelled to push back.
"If you voted no because you were afraid about the loss of coverage, you were afraid about the lack of subsidies, you were afraid about losing your benefits, you were afraid about older people paying more, why would you vote for this latest proposal?" said Rep.
"Everything had been moving smoothly until the administration moved in with a heavy hand", said Matt House, spokesman for Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.
Republicans on the Hill have seemed to comprehend the potential political blowback from a major fight over funding the government, while their health-care bill and other priorities continue to hang in the balance.