Donald Trump blasts Republicans who are against Graham-Cassidy proposal

Pauline Gross
September 25, 2017

Six of the nation's largest medical associations Saturday called on the Senate to reject the latest Republican effort to repeal Obamacare, saying that "health care is too important to get wrong". He said Medicaid block grants would shift money from Democratic-leaning states to Republican ones and set up a "food fight" every time partisan control of Congress shifts. It would also dramatically cut Medicaid spending over time.

With those two, along with Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), not supporting the bill, another Republican senator came out against it today.

This does not even take into account another possible GOP dissenter: Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski.

A spokeswoman for Murkowski, Karina Petersen, said Saturday: "Senator Murkowski has seen the president's tweet but is still analysing the bill and waiting to hear from CBO to determine its potential impacts for Alaskans". Paul, though, doesn't like it because he believes the bill doesn't go far enough in repealing the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare.

If passed, the Graham-Cassidy bill would cause 32 million people to lose their coverage and raise costs for people lucky enough to hang onto their plans by 20 percent or more.

Yet Republican congressional leaders, goaded by GOP voters and the president himself, were determined to give it one last try.

Late Saturday, six associations representing US doctors, hospitals and insurers said they opposed the bill because it would cause patients with pre-existing conditions to lose coverage and result in more expensive health insurance.

Also this week, the "Big Six" negotiators from the White House, Senate and House are expected to unveil more details of their tax reform plan, which like the health-care talks, could be spark messy disagreements among Republicans that could complicate their next big legislative target.

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The senator added that if they could "remove the block grants" from the bill, or "block grant at pre-Obama levels", he could vote for it.

In July, McCain was the key vote that killed the last GOP effort to dump Obamacare, flashing a dramatic thumbs down on the Senate floor in the waning minutes of the vote.

"It is very hard for me to envision a scenario where I would end up voting for this bill", Collins said.

Meanwhile, the chairman of the health committee and lead Republican negotiator, Sen.

John McCain, whose announcement Friday that he would not vote for the proposal seemingly scuttled efforts to revive the repeal, came under renewed criticism from the White House. Those rules expire on September 30. McCain's statement of opposition means the Graham-Cassidy bill is likely dead in the water.

Senate GOP leaders are crafting 11th-hour changes in their last-ditch Obamacare repeal bill to win over Sens. "I'm very excited about it", Graham said. But the budget office said that it would take at least several weeks to provide an analysis of the bill's effects on health insurance coverage and premiums. "Let Arizona down!" Trump tweeted.

Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell has been expected to bring the bill up for a vote at some point next week, as he looks to pass legislation to fulfil a seven-year Republican campaign promise.

Other reports by GizPress

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