Dallas Republican Pete Sessions says GOP plan doesn't resolve health care problem

Faith Castro
June 25, 2017

Senate Republicans unveiled their highly-anticipated Obamacare repeal bill on Thursday, and are aiming to hold a vote on the legislation before the end of June. However, the legislation can be amended before it's put up for a vote, so it's still possible that it will be tweaked enough to gain the support of enough Republicans to pass.

House GOP leaders say Trump was a big asset in getting the health care bill passed, despite a fight with the hard-right Freedom Caucus that stalled the measure. Clinton wrote the strong words on Twitter as she retweeted a study by the Center for American Progress that said the health care bill now making its way through the Senate could lead to as many as 28,000 additional deaths in 2026.

Trump helped House leaders corral votes, but his ability to move more difficult-to-influence senators is untested.

But while it's true that health care costs are rising, there's little evidence that Senate Republicans' bill, which was negotiated in secret for weeks and could see a vote as early as Thursday, would do anything to stop that rise.

It's now unclear whether or not the BCRA will clear the Senate.

That could add Heller's name to Trump's call list.

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During a White House meeting last week with 13 Republican senators, Trump said the House version was "mean" and urged the senators to make it more generous.

Healthcare stocks closed down 0.1 % on Friday, clawing back some losses after the sector dropped sharply late in the session on Heller's announcement. That could result in millions of Americans losing health care coverage. "Remember keep your doctor, keep your plan?" Rand Paul of Kentucky, Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, Ted Cruz of Texas and Mike Lee of Utah announced they could not support the bill as-is.

Trump, in an interview with Fox News that aired on Friday morning, called the group of conservative lawmakers "four very good people".

The conservative quartet said they oppose the initial version, which will be subject to a slew of amendments during floor proceedings, for "a variety of reasons" but declared themselves "open to negotiation and obtaining more information before it is brought to the floor". "They'd like to get certain changes".

"It's a very, very narrow path", the president said. "But the president is very supportive of the bill", White House press secretary Sean Spicer said Friday. That message was at odds with Trump's Rose Garden celebration after the bill cleared the House, when he told lawmakers it was a "great plan". He said Tuesday's Republican win in a hotly contested Georgia special election for a House seat shows Democrats would "do better" if they worked with him and congressional Republicans on issues like health care, taxes and infrastructure. He indicated the Senate plan met that request.

The Senate bill maintains much of the structure of the House's but differs in key ways.

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