Senators worry about rush over healthcare bill ahead of release

AHCA job loss estimates by state v2

The group has been criticized by Democrats and a handful of Republicans for working privately to reshape America's health care system. John Thune, R-S.D., told reporters that the Senate effort would likely postpone until 2023 its phase-out of Obamacare's Medicaid expansion, which gave health coverage to 15 million more Americans.

Patty Murray of Washington put Thune and his colleagues on the spot, noting that if the meetings are truly open to "anybody," then Democrats "want to be there so we can let people across the country know exactly how this bill would increase health care costs, undermine women's access to health care, and cut off coverage for millions of families".

The House passed its version of the bill, the American Health Care Act, last month after pulling it twice from a floor vote in April amid strong opposition by the conservative Freedom Caucus.

The columnist warned President Donald Trump's administration and Republicans in Congress in February about the potential repercussions of failing to repeal and replace Obamacare. While the House legislation pegged federal insurance subsidies to age, the Senate bill would link them to income as the ACA does.

Heading into a GOP Senate lunch, some lawmakers said that big questions on the bill, such as whether it will include state waivers for Obamacare's Essential Health Benefits, remained unanswered.

In the Senate, there was a back-and-forth on a bill passed the chamber along party lines by one vote to allow a wrongful death lawsuit for the death of a viable fetus. Another possibility was letting states drop some coverage requirements that Obama's law imposes on insurers, they said. Once that occurs, leadership may choose to hold a Senate-wide vote before the July 4 recess.

Other Republican senators who ought to be particularly alarmed include Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia, Rob Portman of OH and Dean Heller of Nevada.

Pence, who has substantially more legislative experience than Trump, has attend a luncheon with Senate Republicans almost every week, checking in on the health care process as a liaison for the White House. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, said the Republican plan does "not yet" do enough to reduce premiums, a key GOP goal.


Collins, a moderate Republican from ME, said she wanted to read an assessment by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office on its impact on cost and insurance coverage before making her decision.

"We'll delve into it, have a lot more to say about it".

"Besides Lee, two other conservatives were also complaining".

Senate Republicans gave themselves the goal of having the new bill passed by the July 4th recess, but as it gets closer their timeline is getting more hard to reach.

As Democrats made a series of motions that McConnell turned aside, Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., twice asked the GOP leader to ensure Democrats will have more than 10 hours to study and debate the bill before the vote. "[Lisa] Murkowski (R-AK) in offering an amendment to strike the provision", she said.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) intends to present the draft to wary GOP senators at a meeting on Thursday morning.

Paul is not one of the 13 senators chosen by McConnell to draft the bill.

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