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Politics

GOP to Vote on Obamacare Overhaul Bill Next Week? It’s a ‘Definite Maybe,’ Says One Republican

Written by Philip Hodges

Now that they have a majority in the House, the Senate, and presumably the White House, the Republicans have had an impossible time getting anything accomplished. This is the downside of winning. When a political party loses and finds themselves in the minority, they’re unified against the other party. Right now, it’s the Democrats against everyone else in government. And they’re unified in their resistance to Trump and anyone they perceive to be the President’s allies and anything that smacks of being part of Trump’s agenda.

The Republicans on the other hand are not unified. They lack leadership. I think they’ve been so giddy with excitement since they’ve won majorities that they don’t know where to go. They can’t all agree on legislation, because they over-complicate things, which causes division.

We all know how well their first attempt at ‘repealing and replacing’ Obamacare turned out. It simply didn’t turn out. Now, they’re sort of trying again, with some minor changes, that prompted Thomas Massie (R-KY) to say it’s moved his disposition toward the bill from ‘hell no’ to just ‘no.’ To him, that is progress.

The problem now is that while a lot of those on the conservative side are agreeing to vote for the amended legislation, the more liberal wing of the GOP doesn’t like it anymore.

Why doesn’t the leadership simplify it? Back when Obama was President, the GOP was unified in repealing and replacing Obamacare. Now that they control the House, the Senate, and the White House, they can’t do anything.

Trump wanted the Republicans to pass an Obamacare repeal and replace bill to nicely coincide with his 100-day milestone, but Democrats threatened to shut the government down if they did. So, GOP leaders relented and have indicated that perhaps next week they’ll get to it. If they have the votes. Fox News reported:

But Ryan didn’t want lawmakers looking past the biggest issue in front of them: government funding. Money to run the government expired in less than a week. So Ryan reminded his members the priority now wasn’t health care, but avoiding a government shutdown. After all, a government shutdown would be a monstrous disaster — especially if it corresponded with the close of Trump’s first 100 days.

Ryan said there would be more conversations when Republicans returned to Washington. They hoped for updated bill text on a plan drafted by Rep. Tom MacArthur, R-N.J.  

A vote this week? Doubtful. But maybe, just maybe, if they could cobble together the votes.

[…]

“We’ve got to do something,” said one conservative who didn’t want to be identified and was leaning toward voting yes. “It’s not great. But we’ve got to just pass the dang-gum thing.”

[…]

“We are not voting on health care tomorrow,” McCarthy said when he emerged from the late-night [Thursday] conclave.

Democrats peppered Rules Committee Chairman Pete Sessions, R-Texas, with questions about health care later once his panel reconvened at 10:35 p.m.

“We’re going to try to measure three times and saw once,” Sessions said. “A lot of people around this town have tried their best to try to rush it, rush it, rush it.”

However, he told Democrats that Republicans were “having a fun time speaking about it with each other.”

Rep. Jim McGovern, D-Mass., inquired with Sessions about the prospects for bringing the health care bill up next week.

“It will be a definite maybe,” Sessions replied.

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by EagleRising.com


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Philip Hodges

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