If Republicans can ram their latest assault on health care through the Senate, the House will face a take-it-or-leave-it situation, since the Senate’s ability to pass a bill with just 51 votes ends on September 30. But even though the House had trouble passing its own Obamacare repeal bill months ago, Speaker Paul Ryan says he and his caucus will take whatever the Senate sends them, because taking health care away from millions of people is just too important to worry about the details.
“We hope the Senate does pass Graham-Cassidy,” Ryan said. “We are encouraged at the development of Graham-Cassidy. And I am encouraging every senator to vote for Graham-Cassidy because it is our best last chance to get repeal and replace done. And I do believe it is a far greater improvement over the status quo.”
House Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows agreed that the
Continue reading “Paul Ryan really hopes Senate Republicans give him one more shot at destroying health care”
The drafting of the Graham-Cassidy healthcare bill has Republicans throwing away more than a century of Senate protocol.
Don Ritchie, historian emeritus of the Senate, said not since the years before World War I has the Senate taken such a partisan, closed-door approach to major legislation.
But it’s going to get worse. In order to get the bill through, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell intends to cut off all debate, prevent any amendments, and refuse any discussion. It’s a combination that has never been used before. It’s a genuinely unprecedented shutdown of the Senate. For anyone who claimed to be concerned over the way previous Republican bills were pushed, it might seem that this institution-flattening excercise in power would be a deal-breaker … or maybe not.
In addition to a process that’s ripping up the Senate rules …
Although interim Alabama Sen. Luther Strange has the backing of both Donald Trump and Sen. Mitch McConnell, his candidacy to claim Jeff Sessions’ old seat is flagging against fire-breathing conservative Roy Moore. Moore, who’s been removed from the Alabama Supreme Court bench twice for defying the federal judiciary, is looking strong in state polls ahead of his Sept. 26 runoff against Strange, even registering double-digit leads in some cases.
This has Senate Republicans extremely worried. Not only is there bad blood between McConnell and Moore, but Moore’s victory could give rise to a crop of GOP grenade throwers in the 2018 primaries. Politico writes:
A win by Moore could embolden conservative insurgents to challenge [Arizona Sen. Jeff] Flake and Sen. Dean Heller (R-Nev.) and potentially Sens. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) and Bob Corker (R-Tenn.).
That’s a nightmare for Republicans that are trying to add to their majority next
Continue reading “Senate Republicans fret that Alabama’s runoff results could upend GOP incumbents in 2018”
Doctors’ groups are against the latest Republican effort to repeal Obamacare and gut health care, writing that “The proposal fails to protect the health care coverage and consumer protections available under current law.” Public hospitals are against it. Planned Parenthood is against it, calling it “especially terrible for women.” The AARP is against it, bluntly tweeting that “it’s a bad plan.” But Senate Republicans are still trying to get the votes to pass Graham-Cassidy, and that should make us all nervous. Specifically, it should make us all nervous in a calling-our-senators-and-taking-action-every-way-we-know-how way:
Indivisible’s policy director Angel Padilla told TPM that even if the GOP’s senators’ trumpeting of the bill’s chances turns out to be “a big headfake,” he wants to make sure he and other activists did all they could to oppose it.
“Earlier this summer, the Senate tried and failed in an embarrassing way. They want to avoid
Continue reading “AARP and doctors’ groups oppose latest Republican health care plan, but it’s not dead yet”
They’re not there yet, but Senate Republicans are working hard to get from 49 to 50 votes to pass Graham-Cassidy, their latest plan to strip health coverage from tens of millions of people and rob still-insured people of important protections. That means it’s time—again—to call your senator and urge him or her not to be the 50th vote that enables Mike Pence to once again show off his special smug tie-breaking smile.
On Friday, Cassidy told reporters his bill has support from as many as 48 or 49 Republicans. “I’m confident we’ll get there on the Republican side,” he said. “People are coming out and saying they are for it, either publicly or privately.”
Confident they’ll get there means they aren’t there yet, but consider who’s standing in the way. Sen. John McCain voted against “skinny repeal” in July, dooming that bill, but he hasn’t ruled out voting for
Continue reading “Senate Republicans are scrambling for the 50th vote to gut health care”
Senate Republicans are trying to mount one final push to repeal Obamacare before their magical ability to do so with 51 votes disappears at the end of September. The Graham-Cassidy bill is a classic Republican one: it targets poor people, old people, children, people with disabilities, and blue states for major cuts. It would probably lead to major premium spikes. And Republicans are probably just a couple votes short of passing it and sending it on to the House to take it or leave it with no changes.
“McConnell and his team are engaged and serious about the vote and working with the conference to build support for Graham-Cassidy,” a source familiar with the bill’s prospects said Sunday. The “White House is also operating with all hands on deck.”
White House officials began making calls last week to Republican Senate officesand plan to whip Senate votes this week,
Continue reading “Republican senators are trying to gut your health care. Yes, again.”
Alabama ex-Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore is a crackpot. He is anti-American, or at least anti-Constitution, and has twice now been booted from his position on the court for declarations that his own religious preferences supersede federal law, because he says so. The first time was when he installed a monument to the Ten Commandments outside his court, then refused all orders to remove it due to the flagrant mixing of religion with the law of the land. After getting booted for that breach of law he was returned to his place of power by Alabama voters, who appear to be either deeply stupid or themselves not altogether onboard with this Constitution thing when push comes to shove. Upon his return, he wrote an administrative order demanding Alabama state officials ignore the Supreme Court decision overturning same-sex marriage bans and instead abide by his own court’s decision.
This got him suspended from
Continue reading “Sarah Palin jetting to Alabama to stump for crackpot ‘Merica-hater Roy Moore”