Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) on Tuesday said Democrats will keep fighting Senate Republicans’ proposal to repeal parts of Obamacare, after Republican leaders announced that a vote on the bill will be delayed until after the July 4 recess.
“We know the fight is not over, that is for sure,” Schumer said at a press conference after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) announced the delay. “We’re not resting on any laurels, nor do we feel any sense yet of accomplishment.”
Schumer said Senate Republicans will continue trying to corral enough votes to pass the proposal.
“Over the next couple of weeks, we know that Leader McConnell will try to use a slush fund to buy off Republicans, cut back-room deals, to try and get this thing done,” he said.
Schumer cited the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office’s estimate that 22 million more people would lose coverage by 2026 than under current law.
“The truth is, as CBO made clear yesterday, the Republicans cannot excise the rotten core at the center of their health care bill,” he said. “Even Trump voters don’t like it. That is not going to change with any little tweak that wins over this senator or that.”
He called for Republican senators to “abandon the closed-door secret process” they used to draft the legislation.
“Go to regular order, have committee hearings, allow amendments and go back to the idea that you need 60 votes, a bipartisan majority, to pass a bill, and we can start over again and work together,” he said.
Schumer said Democrats will “watch” the bill and fight any future iterations “tooth and nail” if they resemble the current proposal.
“We’re going to fight the bill,” he said. “And we have a darn good chance of defeating it — a week from now, a month from now, a year from now.”