“What Democrats are aiming to do is highlight how appalling it is for Republicans to try to jam through a bill that impacts one-sixth of our economy, and would undermine the health and financial security of patients and families nationwide, without so much as a single public hearing or a robust floor debate”, said the Democratic aide, who asked not to be named.
Schumer and Democrats called for the GOP’s House-passed American Health Care Act (AHCA) bill to go through a hearing process, where members from both parties could debate the bill publicly before it is brought to a vote.
Critics have estimated that the House bill would curtail Medicaid by some $800 billion, and some Republican senators from states where Medicaid was expanded under Obama have expressed concern about passing legislation that slashes aid to thousands of constituents.
The House passed its Obamacare repeal bill in May, but Senate Republicans have been drafting their own bill behind closed doors.
Using tactics like parliamentary inquiries and unanimous consent requests, Democrats are drawing comparison to the process used to usher in Obamacare.
McConnell responded that senators would meet on the Senate floor with an unlimited amendment process. They’ll also attempt to delay any impending health care vote, which could come up as early as next week.
“If Republicans won’t relent and debate their health care bill in the open for the American people to see, then they shouldn’t expect business as usual in the Senate”, said Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer in a statement.
“Most Republicans don’t have a clue as to what’s in this legislation, let alone Democrats, let alone the average American”, fumed Senator Bernie Sanders.
Patty Murray (D-Wash.), comes as Democrats are under growing pressure to grind the Senate to a halt as the fight over ObamaCare’s fate enters a key two-week stretch.
And not only have the Republicans been crafting this massive piece of legislation in total secrecy, but the uncertainty surrounding their efforts have wreaked havoc on the health care system already in place.
His spokesman says it looks like the proposal doesn’t do enough for education, economic development and the middle class.
With just 10 legislative days before McConnell’s deadline, all that most lawmakers and the public have to work on is the House bill, which a non-partisan congressional review predicted would leave 23 million fewer people insured over the next decade.
In some ways on this GOP health care bill, we have not seen a process like this before – but in others, we certainly have.
President Trump had a warning for Republicans complaining that they are being left out. In the House of Representatives, conservatives wrote to McConnell about media reports on the Senate’s work.