Most Voters Oppose Senate Health Care Bill's Cuts to Medicaid

Camille Francis
June 29, 2017

Republican leaders - short of the votes necessary to pass the bill - said Tuesday they would delay a vote on the bill until after the July 4 congressional recess.

McConnell said the meeting at the White House was "very helpful". The decision was described by a Republican aide and another informed person who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly about the closed-door decision.

"We will not be on the bill this week", Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., told reporters in what was a remarkable reversal of plans to push one of President Donald Trump's and the GOP's top priorities through the chamber this week.

On June 22, Senate Republicans released a draft of the Better Care and Reconciliation Act, which is their version of the health care bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.

But after senators from Maine, Nevada, Utah and Wisconsin all said they would vote against a motion to begin debate, McConnell pulled the bill for continued intraparty negotiations.

Reprinted with permission of the Associated Press.

With the Democrats totally against any effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act that has helped cover millions of uninsured Americans, the Trump's party could only afford to lose two votes among Republicans.

A senior Republican close to both the Senate and the White House also told The Post that Republican lawmakers thought Trump was a "paper tiger" and did not mind going "their own way".

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But his difficulties mounted when more moderate members balked at the bill because its cuts, especially those to Medicaid, were too severe.

"I will say that I have so many fundamental problems with the bill that have been confirmed by the (Congressional Budget Office) 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".

"Consequently, we will not be on the bill this week". He said the president was "open-minded towards trying to make the bill a better bill" and repeated his criticism of retaining numerous subsidies in Obamacare. Three more Senators came out of the woodwork after McConnell said he would call off the vote Tuesday afternoon, bringing the total opposition to nine Republican Senators.

According to Time, he told the senators, "This will be great if we get it done".

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer is calling on Trump to meet with Republicans and Democrats on the Senate bill. And even if you buy the administration's argument that the Congressional Budget Office has a lousy track record, its report certainly made the Senate bill a tougher political sell.

It would cut Medicaid, which provides health insurance to over 70 million poor and disabled people, by $772 billion through 2026 by capping its overall spending and phasing out Obama's expansion of the program.

Several Republican senators, including Sen. "If you laid 22 million people end to end, it would reach Canada, where they could get health care".

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