GOP Senate health care bill teetering on edge of collapse

U.S. Senator Susan Collins talks to reporters as she leaves a meeting of the Senate Republican caucus to unveiling of Senate Republic

Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said late Saturday that he's postponing plans to begin Senate debate in the next few days after Republican Senator John McCain said he'll be home in Arizona recovering from unexpected surgery.

Shares of health-care companies were more or less flat as traders awaited the outcome of legislative negotiations on the health-care overhaul. A revised version of the bill he released earlier this week quickly drew two firm no votes - Rand Paul of Kentucky and Susan Collins of ME - leaving the Kentucky Republican with no margin of error.

Critics of the Senate's health care bill, taking advantage of the delay, said Sunday that Republican leaders needed to rework the legislation in fundamental ways.

McCain's office said in the statement he is in "good spirits and recovering comfortably at home with his family".

After weeks of wrangling, Senate Republicans unveiled a revised version of their healthcare bill on Thursday, with GOP leaders planning a vote, or at least a procedural one, in the upcoming week.

"The longer the bill's out there, the more conservative Republicans are going to discover that it's not repeal", he said.

Democratic senators offered back in March to work with Republicans to fix problems with the insurance market if they agreed to drop their efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act.

Paul also suggested that Republicans should first repeal and later replace Obamacare.

While Collins said that she did not know if the legislation would ultimately pass, she said as many as 10 Republicans have doubts about it.

Sen. Rand Paul, R-KY, has shown little interest in legislating, preferring to bolster his own reputation for purity. Sen.

The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimated the bill would cut Medicaid by almost $800 billion by 2026, and would cut Medicaid 35 percent come 2036. "And they would have a very hard time even staying in existence".

The delay will give the CBO more time to score McConnell's latest bill, although it's not clear it will be enough to allow them to fully examine a new amendment from Republican Senator Ted Cruz of Texas that would allow insurers to offer stripped-down plans that exclude people with pre-existing conditions, charge women more, and offer far skimpier benefits.

"It's also important to point out that under this bill, Wyoming will be getting more money in terms of disproportionate share hospital payments", Barrasso stated.

Without Medicaid, the majority of the expansion population would either fall into the "treatment gap" - unable to receive substance-use treatment because of a lack of insurance or public funds - or be forced to wait months or years to get into a publicly funded treatment program. Asked what would happen if the bill did not pass, he said: "I assume we'll keep trying".

McCain, 80, underwent a medical procedure at Mayo Clinic Hospital in Phoenix on Friday to remove a blood clot from above his left eye, his office announced Saturday afternoon. This addition could bring down costs for some, but has caused contention with some moderate senators because it could hurt those with pre-existing conditions.

Lawmakers are eager to see what the office says about a proposal added to the bill last week in a bid for support from the most conservative Republican senators.



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