GOP senator warns against rushed vote on health care bill
Jun 20 2017 by Larry Hoffman
The ads seek to cast the GOP effort as having a negative impact on families and older Americans.
CNN reported on Saturday, citing unnamed sources, that Democrats are considering steps to halt Senate business to protest Republicans working on their health bill in secret. The coalition - which includes AARP, two hospital associations and four disease-fighting organizations - has said it will convene events in at least three other states in coming weeks, with the next one Wednesday in Reno, Nev.
In a television ad airing in each senator's state except for Arizona, a young boy is seen having an asthma attack, while his mother rushes for his inhaler. "That will positively effect the coverage and care of millions of Americans, including many who are dealing with mental illness, chronic health problems, and drug addiction, " the letter states. "She isn't thinking that it will force her to choose between filling his prescriptions or paying their mortgage".
The Democratic senator said he is hosting the hearing because GOP leaders have been crafting a bill "in secret with no public input or oversight".
"But our senators should", the narrator later concludes. President Donald Trump told them in a private meeting that the House's version was "mean" and needed to be "more generous" with money.
The group includes seven governors from both parties, including Charlie Baker of MA, a Republican.
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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer engaged in dueling statements on Friday over health care, one day after the two men expressed hope of more cooperation in a joint interview. They plan to bypass the committee hearing and markup process before bringing a bill to the floor through the fast-track reconciliation process, which requires a simple majority for measures to pass rather than 60 votes.
Gov. Jim Justice, a Democrat, supported that approach.
A spokeswoman for Ernst, Leigh Claffey, also noted the Senate "continues to work carefully on its own bill to ensure affordable, and patient-centered health care solutions". That was a significant part of the decision to spend $1.5 million, Community Catalyst Executive Director Robert Restuccia said.
To be clear, there are a number of true-believer conservative lawmakers in both chambers of Congress who would eagerly sign off on a bill to fully repeal Obamacare and replace it with a true free market alternative. The legislation also opens the door to allowing higher premiums for people based on age.
"The U.S. Senate has always been considered the world's greatest deliberative body and, as members of that body, we should each support open and robust debate", he wrote. The ACA called for an expansion of the Medicaid program for those with low incomes to everyone who earns less than 133 percent of poverty (around $16,000 a year for an individual), with the federal government footing much of the bill.
The ads were produced by the firm GMMB, which worked for the presidential campaigns of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.