Top GOP Senator: Health Care Proposal ‘May Not’ Get A Majority Of Votes

AP

A top Senate Republican said Tuesday that House Republicans’ proposal to replace Obamacare may not be able to get enough votes to reach President Donald Trump’s desk.

Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO), who serves as vice chairman of the Senate GOP conference, raised his concerns about the bill in an interview on KBMZ, surfaced by CNN.

Asked what he liked and didn’t like about the proposal, which was introduced in two House committees Monday afternoon, Blunt said that hadn’t “had time to look at it in great depth yet, so we’ll see,” but he was concerned about its future.

“What I don’t like is it may not be a plan that gets a majority of votes and lets us move on,” he said. “Because we can’t stay where we are with the plan we’ve got now.”

Blunt hedged that “the nucleus of the plan is clearly there” and both the President and House Republicans have said it’s “negotiable.”

“So I’ll be interested to be a part of that negotiation as we work toward a majority in the House and Senate that puts a bill on the President’s desk,” he said.

The new proposal faces early opposition from some Republicans and conservatives.

On Monday, four Republican senators told Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) that they wouldn’t support any changes to Medicaid that “could result in a reduction in access to life-saving health care services.” The current Republican proposal continues Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion until 2020, at which point Medicaid is turned into a block grant to the states, which in turn would lead to cuts.

The Tea Party-aligned group FreedomWorks on Tuesday called the proposal “Obamacare-lite.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Matt Shuham is a news writer for TPM. He was previously assistant editor of The National Memo and managing editor of the Harvard Political Review. He is available by email at mshuham@talkingpointsmemo.com and on Twitter @mattshuham.
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