Thursday, 21 February, 2019

GOP delays healthcare vote and demands new CBO score

Melinda Barton | 28 June, 2017, 03:34

McConnell had hoped to push the measure through his chamber by this week's end, before an Independence Day recess that party leaders fear will be used by foes of the legislation to tear away support.

Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan didn't just stumble into this awful bill in some well-intentioned attempt to improve the USA health care system and ensure that Americans of all ages and income levels can afford critical and life-saving health care coverage.

And now, disgruntled centrist and conservative GOP senators are forcing Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to scramble to rescue the measure before debate even begins.

What would actually happen if the GOP health care bill became law?

Senator Bill Cassidy of Louisiana also said he is waiting to hear from leaders about revisions before deciding how he'll vote.

"We are a safety net organization, and we tend to have veterans without other health access come to the VA", Shulkin said.

These are the people raised with the belief, as Bill Clinton put it, "If you work hard and play by the rules, you'll be rewarded with a good life for yourself". While looking for tweaks that can satisfy the conservatives, Senate GOP leaders are also arguing that any Republican who fails to vote for the leadership bill will be responsible for leaving Obamacare standing.

But the House Democrats' chief budget-writer, Nancy Nathanson of Eugene, said veterans are being supported by sending more money to other agencies, including those that provide housing and mental health care for veterans.

The motion is normally a routine procedural move, but its chances were growing increasingly grim due to the Republican intraparty division.

With Republicans only able afford the loss of two votes, the bill appeared to be teetering on the edge by lunchtime. Moderate Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, said she would vote no. "I wouldn't count McConnell out yet".

Meanwhile, Democrats on the Hill were organizing news conference after news conference, including a large showing of Democratic senators who gathered on the Capitol steps to lambast the already-beleaguered bill. Ted Cruz for almost an hour.

Republican Rep. Sean Duffy, of Wisconsin, expects that Johnson will vote to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act "when he is comfortable with the bill".

Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, R-West Virginia, has been largely quiet since the bill went public last week.

Lee was among four conservative senators who announced last week they oppose the bill's current version.

Asked later if there needs to be more opioid funding in the bill, Capito said that was just one of the issues.

The overlapping concerns and competing interests of the lawmakers highlight the balancing act facing McConnell as he tries to unify his party and deliver a legislative win to the president.

The lunch, according to an aide, was expected to be at effort to both rally the troops and serve as a policy discussion.

McConnell said Trump has been "very involved" in helping along the Senate bill since it was revealed Thursday. Despite an initial addition to the measure Monday, Republicans continued to lay out demands for more changes to the bill, hoping leadership addresses their concerns.

Pence expressed uncertainty earlier Tuesday on whether the bill would make it to the floor. "We're continuing to talk". Marco Rubio. "I would rather do it right than fast". "The Senate bill does formalize several critical administrative and regulatory improvements, such as giving Medicaid Directors a seat at the table in the development of regulations that impact how the program is run, and the pathway to permanency for certain waiver programs", the group said.

The amendment to the individual mandate comes after experts warned that dropping the Obamacare fine -a key provision of the original Senate bill - would lead to insolvency in the insurance marketplace, as younger, healthier people would not pay the penalty for forgoing health coverage.