Friday, 18 August, 2017

Short on votes, Senate Republicans delay vote on GOP health bill

Gazette-Mail file Gazette-Mail file
Francis Olson | 28 June, 2017, 07:55

By waiting until after the July 4 recess, Republicans are likely to come under growing pressure when they return to their home states.

With Republicans controlling the 100-seat Senate by 52 to 48, the leadership can not afford to lose more than two Republican defectors, with vice-president Mike Pence casting the deciding vote. McConnell told senators he wanted them to agree to a final version of the bill before the end of this week so they could seek a new analysis by the budget office.

The Kentucky Republican and other senators headed to a meeting Tuesday afternoon with President Donald Trump, who McConnell said has been calling senators and lobbying them on the bill this week.

Will the extra time help in convincing his reluctant colleagues? That deals another blow to party leaders hoping to push the top-priority measure through the Senate this week.

"I have so many fundamental problems with the bill that have been confirmed by the CBO report that it's hard for me to see how any tinkering is going to satisfy my fundamental and deep concerns about the impact of the bill", she told reporters at the Capitol. "If this bill isn't good for Kansas, it isn't good for me", he said.

Senate leaders are scrambled to rescue their health care bill in the face of defections after Congress' nonpartisan budget office said the measure would leave 22 million more people uninsured by 2026 than President Barack Obama's health care law. On Facebook last week, Lee wrote that the Senate bill "doesn't even significantly reform American health care", and said he'd settle for language letting states and individuals completely opt out of Obama's law. She's always been a question mark on how she would vote on the bill, and she told CNN Tuesday morning that she's "concerned about the bill in the form that it is now". "And it's the biggest promise we've ever made in the modern era", House Speaker Paul Ryan said Tuesday, recalling the constant campaign pledges by Republicans to repeal and replace Obamacare.

"I think it's much better to delay the vote and work on it than it is to bring up a bill that's going to fail on the floor and it looks like that one was destined for failure", Rep. Massie said.

Kushner, Greenblatt met with family of murdered Border Policewoman in Israel
The visits by Greenblatt and Kushner are the first major peace push by the White House since Trump visited the region last month. Greenblatt is to be joined by Trump's son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner on Wednesday.

Moderate Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev., on Friday said he'd oppose the procedural motion without alterations.

WASHINGTON (AP) - Millionaires would get tax cuts averaging $52,000 a year from the Senate Republicans' health bill while middle-income families would get about $260, according to a new analysis of the foundering bill.

The waiting period provision would mean that slightly more people would be able to maintain coverage between 2018 and 2026 excluding 2019.

McConnell delivered the message to GOP senators at a private lunch also attended by Vice President Mike Pence and White House chief of staff Reince Priebus, sources told The Associated Press. Of the 22 million people losing health coverage, 15 million would be Medicaid recipients.

Kasich has been highly critical nationally of the bill's cuts to Medicaid, which he says will harm America's most vulnerable citizens.

The CBO also predicted the Senate legislation would increase consumers' out of pocket costs because standard policies would be skimpier than now offered. That's because standard policies would be skimpier than now offered under Obama's law, covering a smaller share of expected medical costs.

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