Senate steers toward showdown vote next week on health bill

Posted June 22, 2017

Schumer responded to McConnell telling reporters the majority leader is wrong. John McCain, R-Ariz., told CNN. Chris Coons, D-Del., Sen.

When the Senate writes a major new piece of legislation, it usually circulates draft versions and holds public hearings for experts' testimony, before scheduling a vote.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Tuesday that he hoped to make available on Thursday a "discussion draft" of the Republican plan - the first time the general public will get a chance to see a bill that has been crafted for weeks in secret.

"He made it clear from the beginning that that was one of his priorities", Spicer said.

It would also largely retain the subsidies Obama provided to help millions buy insurance, which are pegged mostly to people's incomes and the premiums they pay.

The Senate must have the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office provide a cost estimate for the measure 28 hours before a vote can take place. So politically, it should come as no surprise that the Republicans in Congress are trying to conduct as little of this in the public view as possible.

As Brian Beutler has argued, GOP leaders are not merely lying about what is in the bill. Some of its provisions were described by people on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss them publicly.

All of McConnell's procedural tactics so far have laid the groundwork for extremely swift passage of the Senate health bill.

While the Utah senator acknowledged an urgency to health care reform, he is frustrated by the approach. McConnell might also be committing some language to paper regarding which ACA regulations states would be allowed to waive and schlepping that paper to the CBO.

But Gardner, said the fault lies with US politics writ large, rather than with him and other Senate Republican leaders, who are writing the bill and control the chamber's agenda. McConnell may just bring something to the Senate floor, let it fail, and move on; reports that Republicans are close to consensus could very well indicate an effort to steamroll any opposition with an illusion of momentum.

In response, Gillum released a statement giving somewhat backhanded praise to Rubio for cautioning against ramming a health care bill through the Senate. They would have brass bands going down Main Street America saying: 'Look at our bill.

The health care bill passed by the House of Representatives-known as the AHCA-has a 21% approval rating. Senators may also be considering whether to vary Medicaid payment rates by state in order to address discrepancies between those states that have expanded their programs and those that have not. The so-called individual mandate - aimed at keeping insurance markets solvent by prompting younger, healthier people to buy policies - has always been one of the GOP's favorite targets.

If Medicaid expansion is eliminated, even if phased out over several years, those who lose coverage will face significant difficulty finding an affordable alternative, Heitkamp said. He staged an elaborate mock hunt through the Capitol in the spring for the then-secretive House GOP bill being shaped behind closed doors.

If the legislation closely resembles the House bill - which President Trump recently described as "mean" - polls suggest it would be unpopular in North Dakota.

If the Senate gets the 50 votes to pass its measure, it would be sent back to the House for approval.

The biggest contention held by the trio of conservative lawmakers, Sens.

"I don't think it gives enough time to thoroughly analyze the bill, but we'll see when it comes out", she said of the prospect of voting on the Affordable Care Act repeal next week, when McConnell has said he expects the bill to go to the floor. "I'm not open to Obamacare lite".