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Update: McConnell Says Senate Healthcare Bill Coming Thursday

by Countable | 6.20.17

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced that he plans to release a draft of the Senate healthcare overhaul on Thursday, which would set the gears in motion for the bill to be voted on by the full Senate next week.

"I expect to have a discussion draft on Thursday and we will go to the bill, obviously, once we get a [Congressional Budget Office] score, likely next week," McConnell announced at the Capitol before avoiding questions from reporters on the substance of the bill. “I wouldn’t want to compare it to the House bill. It will speak for itself. It will be different. Take a different approach based upon these endless discussions we’ve had.”

McConnell is under intense criticism from Democrats this week who are highlighting that Republicans are crafting the bill to rework one-sixth of the U.S. economy behind closed doors, without holding any hearings and without input from the minority party. But the criticism is also now coming from his fellow Republicans who are feeling the heat back home.

"Health care is such an important thing, I think we should have debated in open, in committee hearings, have both sides bring in witnesses," Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) told reporters. “If you do it on one side only, what you’re setting yourself up for is failure. The public is not going to accept it if only one side does it. If you at least have open committee hearings and hear from both sides I think that’s better.”

It’s still unclear if McConnell and other Republican leaders have enough votes to pass the bill next week, and most senators still haven’t seen the proposal so they don’t know if their demands are being met. Many more moderate Republicans are worried about the House proposal to quickly phase out Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion, while more conservative lawmakers are focused on cost savings.

"The conversations continue and we have a host of tools available to lower premiums," Sen. Ted Cruz told reporters. “I believe that should be our central focus: How to make premiums more affordable so that more families who are struggling can access health care.”

"I’m hearing lots of conflicting information," Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) bemoaned to reporters. She gave a presentation to the entire Republican Senate caucus recently on how high risk insurance pools, like they have in her state, can help bring down health costs, but when asked if party leaders are including her proposal in the final bill, she couldn’t say, “We’ll see.”

Contact your senators and let them know if the healthcare bill should be debated in the open!

- Matt Laslo

(Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore via Flickr / Creative Commons)

Countable

Written by Countable

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(532)
  • Karen
    06/20/2017
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    This is abuse of power....Mitch McConnell is a traitor! Trumpcare was done in secret...no one even knows how it will impact real people! Vote NO ON TRUMPCARE!

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  • Duane
    06/20/2017
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    Hello. My name is Duane and I'm emailing from 33759 in Clearwater. I'm urging you to reject Trumpcare. Don't bow to Mitch McConnell's pressure to vote on this bill no one has seen and your constituents DO NOT WANT. If McConnell forces a vote, vote NO on Trumpcare. Thank you. Duane Duffey

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  • Leah
    06/20/2017
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    I urge you to push for an open debate on the Trumpcare bill. The fact that public discussion will be limited is not how our democracy should work. It's difficult to comment on the bill when only thirteen white men have been responsible for putting it together. Any bill that has a negative impact on the poor, sick and elderly is just wrong, especially when the tax benefits will most benefit the richest in our country. ACA is fixable. With less than 20% of the people wanting repeal, a vote to do so would be disastrous. Simply because the GOP has been threatening to repeal ACA for six years is not reason enough to do it! I urge you to vote no and work together to fix the ACA. Thank you.

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  • Thomas
    06/20/2017
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    No vote on this until it has been debated and amended. This is unacceptable. I refuse to accept this secret behavior. I have a right to know the contents of this bill.

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  • Timnyc
    06/20/2017
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    Fight for the American people and for Democracy in our system of government this is NOT a Republican or Democratic issue this is an American citizen issue.Stand for the process of Democracy

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  • Bryan
    06/20/2017
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    The GOP are going to pass this. Fools running headlong and fast towards disaster. We must fight fire with fire. The only solution is a Single Payer National Healthcare System. Start demanding it NOW!

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  • Kathy
    06/20/2017
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    I am still puzzled as to why the ACA had to be scrapped and thrown out in the trash. My prime guess is it was supported by a black President who was resisted for 8 years and now the GOP must remove every particle of his being. However, it still puzzles me why they could not have re shaped was did not work and keep what did. So much has been lost already in insurance companies giving up b/c the current administration would not give a yea or nay to a subsidy, and purposely wanted the ACA to implode. I do not see much evidence of a Congress hell bent on supporting the people who sent them to DC to do a job. Vengeance and rhetoric began at the top...and it will filter right back up if a new healthcare bill does not cover everyone fairly.

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  • Ticktock
    06/20/2017
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    I have no idea what's in this bill but I cannot imagine that it will be much better than the ones that came before it. The Republicans railed against ACA because it was passed without a single Republican vote but who did provide many amendments and were witness to numerous hearings (79) concerning the provisions of the healthcare bill. It cannot be said that the Republicans nor the public had no opportunity to be involved. Now the Republicans, behind closed doors, with no Democratic representatives or public involvement, or hearings are about to dictate to the US citizens the healthcare that we will have without our input. The question is: Is the United States a dictatorship or is it a Republic? The Republican Congress is acting as though they are part of the Russian State Duma and our President is Putin. It is time that our, United States, Government is returned to the people! We don't want the AHCA hidden behind closed doors. We will not accept it!

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  • Louise
    06/20/2017
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    I'm urging my senators (McCain and Flake) to vote NO on any version of TrumpCare. Please support instead, a Single Payer Medicare for All. Senator Bernie Sanders has the details. Louise (85345)

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  • Mark
    06/20/2017
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    Politics is about compromise, not forcing it down the other party's throat with a broomstick just because you have a temporary advantage. What goes around comes around. Stop this divisiveness and start acting like responsible adults.

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  • Antonio
    06/20/2017
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    It amazing how you congressman and senators will vote to take away affordable health care for millions of people, yet your own health care if paid by the people (tax payers) of the United States?? You Politicians are just thiefs for hire, typically by big business. It is really a shame that you hide behind close doors and make decisions that effect a vast majority of people only to benefit big business interest.

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  • Andrew
    06/20/2017
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    Do not support this!

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  • Lori
    06/20/2017
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    I'm writing from 63089. This bill has been created in secret and without any bipartisan discussion. DO YOUR JOBS! Vote NO on the AHCA. We need universal healthcare. Now.

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  • Anna
    06/20/2017
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    Why has this bill been drafted in secret? The lack of transparency bodes ill for the American public especially if they become ill. Vote "NO" if it cuts Medicaid, deprives millions of their insurance, undermines women's health, and increases premiums for older people. Rich people do not need tax breaks. People need good and affordable health care.

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  • Chris
    06/20/2017
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    Do not allow this to pass. No one has seen it and millions will be put in a bad situation in regards to their medical care. Create a solution, not a problem.

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  • Ken
    06/20/2017
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    Just think about it. One sixth of our economy for health care. More than many pay for car payment and house payment combined. And that's just premiums. Add out of pocket expenses. I would like to think that a generous and christian nation such as ours should be able to construct a plan that's affordable for all. HR 676 medicare for all is a logical answer to America's spiraling healthcare debt. Why not free up our economy. Quit holding it hostage to the few that don't actually live paycheck to paycheck.

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  • Emily
    06/20/2017
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    Please hold public and senate hearings on the AHCA. This hidden bill can effect a large number of American men women and children. We deserve time to see, debate and amend the Republican bill.

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  • Anne
    06/20/2017
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    Republicans do not do this to the Americans (elected some of you). Healthcare is extremely important topic and issue for all. If you do this in a vacuum it WILL come back to haunt for years to come when Americans revolt against you and vote you out of office. DO THE RIGHT THING FOR EVERY AMERICAN NIOT JUST THE WEALTHY!

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  • Joel
    06/21/2017
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    I am tired of asking. At this point, I demand that whatever healthcare bill the GOP plans to introduce tomorrow be debated and examined completely, regardless of how long that process takes. It must be fully examined by the CBO and the costs revealed. It must be explained to the American people by an unbiased source. It must be a bill that will be fair and supportive for all citizens. And when you are done with that, we need a sunshine law for Congress to eliminate these back room deals and favoritism.

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  • Jeanne
    06/21/2017
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    Secret bills written by old white men who hate women. Sound like a totalitarian government to me.

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