In it, but not of it. TPM DC

Updated at 2 p.m. ET

As the House struggles to agree on a path forward on its bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act, GOP leaders may cave to a demand from hardline conservatives to scrap Obamacare's Essential Health Benefits rule—the mandate that insurance plans cover things like hospitalizations, prescription drugs, mental health and maternity care.

TPM asked Republicans on the other side of the Capitol about whether such a move would fly in the Senate.

Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS), when asked if he supports scrapping EHBs, deadpanned: "I sure don't want my mammogram benefits taken away."

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Republicans are mulling a change to their health care legislation that stands to transform the types of plans offered on the insurance market, blow up the cost to the government of the GOP legislation and could put comprehensive coverage out of reach for the consumers who need it most.

In a last-dash of deal-making before the bill comes to the floor for a vote, conservatives are pushing for a provision that would dismantle the so-called 10 Essential Health Benefits of the Affordable Care Act. Such a provision could be added within hours of when the bill is voted on, and before the Congressional Budget Office or other outside experts have a chance to analyze its effect.

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President Donald Trump sat down with Time Magazine on Wednesday for an interview centered on the idea of "truth," which prompted the President to fiercely defend some of the most baseless and bizarre claims he has made both on the campaign trail and while serving in office.

Trump repeatedly insisted throughout the interview that he has great instincts and that his political predictions tend to come true, while brushing off questions about whether he knew there was any truth to his statements at the time he actually made them.

Below are the wildest moments from Trump's interview with Time.

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The day the House of Representatives was supposed to vote on a bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act dawned in disarray.

As of 9 a.m., the vote had not been scheduled. The House Rules Committee had not finished its markup of the bill after 13 hours of debate, and was scrambling Thursday to override the House policy of forbidding same-day votes on bills. A planned meeting of the House Republican Conference was canceled at the last minute, but lawmakers who hadn't received that memo were seen wandering into the room. Negotiations on major policy changes that would impact millions of people are ongoing, making the likelihood of a Congressional Budget Office analysis of the final bill before the vote close to zero.

Wednesday night was equally chaotic, as pressure from the White House and GOP leaders failed to win over either the moderate or hardline conservative wings of the Republican Party.

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The way Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch would have you think it, being a judge is a science: you consider the facts, you consider the precedent, and you consider, as closely you can, how the law in question was written.

But avoiding questions about how you approach being a judge -- now that, for those who watched Gorsuch’s confirmation hearing, is an art.

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As Thursday's House vote on the bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act looms, the pressure is ramping up on GOP lawmakers who remain undecided or opposed to the legislation. Even after threats to their careers, invitations to the White House, special carve-outs for their states, amendments on their pet issues, and other tactics, critics of the bill still say enough members are holding strong to ensure the bill will fail on the House floor.

As the clock ticked down on Wednesday, Republican leaders made a new promise to the dissenters: that the Senate will add a provision gutting Obamacare's Essential Health Benefits (EHB) rule once the House passes the bill and sends it their way.

The EHB rule, which the current House GOP repeal bill retains, requires that insurance plans have to cover a basic minimum of health care services, including emergency room visits, hospitalization, outpatient services, maternity care, mental health and substance abuse services, prescription drugs, rehabilitative and habilitative services, lab tests, preventive care like vaccines, and vision and dental care for children.

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Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) tried very hard to get Neil Gorsuch to tip his hand on abortion. It didn’t work.

The two engaged in a lengthy back and forth Wednesday about what Gorsuch would and wouldn’t say about key Supreme Court decisions concerning personal privacy. Blumenthal attempted to lead Gorsuch down a path that would illuminate how the judge would rule on abortion, but Gorsuch resisted mightily -- reiterating his respect for the decisions as precedent but withholding deeper engagement with them.

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In a marathon markup of the bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act in the House Rules Committee on Wednesday, Republicans argued that a package of amendments unveiled Monday night would make the legislation more "patient-centered" by giving Americans more "choices" and "freedom" in the health care market.

But among the provisions increasing tax credits for older Americans and allowing states to impose work requirements on their Medicaid recipients, lawmakers tucked in a provision that limits the freedom and choices available for how people can spend the federal dollars meted out under the Republican plan.

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A unanimous decision handed down by the Supreme Court Wednesday quickly became the focus of Judge Neil Gorsuch’s confirmation hearings, as the new decision -- Endrew F. v. Douglas County School District --- undercut reasoning in an opinion written by Gorsuch in an appeals court decision in 2008.

The cases concerned the rights of disabled children under the 2004 law, Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). In 2008, Gorsuch and two other judges on a 10th Circuit appeals court panel ruled that under the IDEA, an education agency need only provide the educational benefits for the child in question that are “merely ... more than de minimis” – a finding Gorsuch defended Wednesday by pointing to a 1996 precedent in the 10th Circuit.

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Paul who?

The White House is going to great lengths to put distance between President Donald Trump and his former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, as a series of explosive news reports emerge detailing the millions of dollars he received from a Russian oligarch with close ties to the Kremlin and a pro-Russia political party in Ukraine.

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said Monday that Manafort, a key member of the Trump campaign for six months, played “a very limited role for a very limited amount of time.” By Wednesday morning, Spicer was refusing to even say Manafort’s name, telling NBC News that “it would be inappropriate for us to comment on a person who is not a White House employee.”

Yet Trump’s ties to Manafort predate the 2016 campaign, and appear to have stretched well into the post-election transition period. FBI Director James Comey confirmed this week that the bureau is investigating ties between Trump’s associates and Russian officials, including whether there was any "cooperation" between the two, casting a cloud over the administration as it tries to shepherd the GOP's long-promised Obamacare repeal bill through Congress. Manafort is reportedly at the heart of this probe.

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