As you know, Republicans have talked about repealing and replacing Obamacare for over six years at this point, but while they did vote to repeal Obamacare over 50 times, they never got around to actually crafting or passing a replacement.
Passing healthcare reform, even if it's conservative (which Obamacare was), is incredibly difficult. It's simply not possible to debate, draft, and pass sweeping legislation that overhauls a third of our entire economy overnight.
Republicans actually do know that, which is why they're backing away from their plans to immediately replace Obamacare, but not their pledge to repeal it.
House Majority Leader Kevin McKarthy said this morning their current thinking is to repeal Obamacare and consider replacing it at a later date. Maybe.
"My personal belief and nothing has been decided yet. I would [move through] and repeal and then go to work on replacing," McCarthy said. "I think once it is repealed you will have, hopefully, fewer people playing politics."
McCarthy argued that Democrats may be incentivized to come to the table then, but he didn't say what the time frame for replace the Affordable Care Act would be.
Here's a spoiler: if they repeal Obamacare without simultaneously replacing it, there will never be a replacement.
To argue that Democrats would be incentivized to come to the table after repealing the law is a misnomer. There won't be a table. Republicans themselves would have no incentive to come to the table without Obamacare to kick around. They would be more than happy to return to the status quo of yesteryear rather than go through the trouble of passing a replacement.
Some Republicans including Speaker of the House Paul Ryan say they want to keep certain provisions of Obamacare such as the elimination of pre-existing conditions, but retaining those provisions without replacing other mechanisms of the law may be impossible.
If Obamacare somehow survives the Trump kleptocracy (I don't think it will), it will be because Republicans have no idea how to replace it.
It's revealing to me that Republican seem willing accept provisions that eliminate pre-existing conditions and allow children to remain on their parent's insurance plans until they're 26. Those provisions probably directly affect their own families and so they're willing to keep them. The rest of the law, such as Medicaid expansion and subsidies, is cast as a handout to those people.