Tuesday, 14 August, 2018

Oklahoma's Inhofe to lead Senate panel in McCain's absence

Ron Matthews | 18 July, 2017, 00:08

The latest delay for Republicans' Obamacare replacement efforts may further damage the GOP's chances of passing a bill already on the verge of failing. Senator John McCain is recuperating from surgery and McConnell announced on Saturday that consideration of the legislation will have to wait until McCain recovers. Republicans control only 52 votes in the chamber, and the early opposition to the bill from Collins and Paul means McConnell can't afford to lose any more votes from his party given the united Democratic opposition.

Sens. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine) have already said they would oppose a procedural vote to advance to the new Senate GOP healthcare legislation, which was unveiled this past week.

But the data actually shows a much more enthusiastic expression of support for the Republicans' bill than when GOP voters are asked simply if they like it.

"I think the longer the bill's out there, the more conservative Republicans are going to discover that it's not repeal", Mr. Paul said Sunday on CBS' "Face the Nation".

McConnell also has to win over Murkowski, who's voiced concerns about the plan's impact on subsidies for consumers on Obamacare's insurance exchanges, Medicaid cuts, and its one-year ban on funding for Planned Parenthood.

Republican critics of the Senate's latest version of health-care legislation were energized after leaders postponed votes on the measure, yet another sign the bill's fortunes are in limbo. The paper did not speak to any of McCain's doctors, but other medical experts said the recovery time for such procedures can be several weeks.

The pending voting on the Senate #Healthcare Bill hit an impasse on Saturday, July 15th, 2017.

"I have never known a man more tenacious and resilient than John McCain". Amendments that are considered "germane" to the health care legislation need 51 votes to be added to the bill. They've stalled all judicial nominations, including non-controversial ones, slowing the process to a crawl until Republicans hold health care hearings.

Sen. Jeff Flake, also from Arizona, put out a statement, saying he and his wife were praying for a speedy recovery. "A willing customer should be able to connect with a willing an insurance company on a policy that makes sense to both, and the law ought not to stand in the way of that", he said.

Collins said she's been in touch with members of the Trump administration about the bill, which she calls "a work in progress".

The repeal and replace of Obamacare was a major promise of Donald Trump's presidential campaign, and it has always been the dream of Republicans in the house to see the end of a bill they agonised over for many years.

Sen. John McCain revealed over the weekend that he had surgery to remove a blood clot from above his eye (more on his condition below). Although they usually come up negative, McCain has suffered in the past from melanoma, a skin cancer that can spread to the brain and elsewhere. "He is in good spirits and recovering comfortably at home with his family".

Axios reports that the White House considers every day without a third Senate defection a victory.

President Trump, for his part, even admitted last week that striking an agreement on health care reform an nearly impossible challenge to overcome.

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