Don’t rush vote: GOP sen
Dems fume over ‘secret’ healthcare bill
WASHINGTON, June 19, (Agencies): A Republican senator on Sunday warned against rushing a vote on a GOP bill to repeal and replace the nation’s health care law, saying both parties deserve a chance to fully debate the bill and propose changes after it was drafted in secret.
“The Senate is not a place where you can just cook up something behind closed doors and rush it for a vote,” said Sen Marco Rubio, R-Florida. “So the first step in this may be crafted among a small group of people, but then everyone’s going to get to weigh in.”
His comments come as Senate Republicans are working hard to finalize legislation to replace the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, without a formal, open drafting session. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, has said he hopes to bring a bill to the floor for a vote within the next two weeks.
But Rubio said he believes the process could take longer and urged the Senate to slow down. These are striking comments from a Republican senator whose party is seeking to push through legislation without the help of Democrats.
President Donald Trump has been eager for quick action, although in a closed-door luncheon with 15 GOP senators last week, he described a House-passed bill as “mean.” Trump said he wanted the Senate version to be “more generous,” according to congressional sources.
“It is going to take days and weeks to work through that in the Senate,” Rubio said on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”
The bill passed by House Republicans last month would phase out in 2020 a Medicaid expansion to additional low-income people. The Congressional
will arrive on Monday. The official said Kushner and Greenblatt will hear from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and their senior advisers.
Trump made a personal appeal for peace during a visit to Israel last month. He has cast Middle East peace as the “ultimate Budget Office has estimated the House bill would cause 23 million people to lose insurance over a decade and leave many sicker and older consumers with much higher costs.
Hoping to doom the GOP effort, a consumer health group said Sunday it was launching a $1.5 million campaign aimed at pressuring five Republican senators in the closely divided chamber to vote against the bill. It was among several groups that in recent weeks have announced stepped-up efforts to oppose the bill.
Community Catalyst Action Fund said it will run television and radio ads beginning Monday. They are targeting Sens Lisa Murkowski of Alaska; Jeff Flake of Arizona; Susan Collins of Maine; Dean Heller of Nevada; and Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia.
“The Senate is working in secret and rushing to pass a bill,” said Robert Restuccia, executive director of the group. “We think it’s critical that Americans across the country understand what’s at stake for them and their families if the US Senate passes this bill.”
Several of the senators being targeted have expressed some concern about the evolving Senate legislation or its process. All of them except Collins also represent states which expanded Medicaid under Obamacare.
Republicans hold a narrow 52-48 majority in the Senate, meaning the party can only afford to have two senators oppose the repeal and replace bill for it to pass with Vice President Mike Pence casting the tie-breaking vote. No Democrat is expected to support the repeal effort.
Meanwhile a former Obama administration
deal,” putting Kushner and Greenblatt in charge of the charting the course.
In remarks in the Middle East, Trump called on both sides to put aside the “pain and disagreements of the past.” But he did not offer any details on how to move forward and avoided issues that have stymied all previous attempts at a peace agreement,
In this July 18, 2016, file photo, Milwaukee County, Wisconsin. Sheriff David Clarke speaks at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland. The Department of Homeland Security says Milwaukee Clarke is no longer a candidate for a position in the agency. In May 2017 Clarke said he was taking a job as an assistant secretary in DHS. But a political adviser to Clarke says the sheriff notified DHS Secretary John Kelly late Friday, June 16, that he ‘had rescinded his acceptance of the agency’s offer’ to join DHS. Clarke says he believes he could help promote President Donald Trump’s agenda ‘in a more aggressive
national security aide is challenging the New Jersey Republican congressman who helped revive President Donald Trump’s health care overhaul.
Andy Kim, 34, of Marlton, told The Associated Press on Monday that he is launching a 2018 bid for New Jersey’s 3rd District House seat against incumbent Rep. Tom MacArthur.
Kim said he is running because of MacArthur’s push for an amendment that would allow states to get federal waivers from the requirement that insurers charge healthy and sick customers the same premiums. The change would be for people who let their coverage lapse, but MacArthur says those people would be covered by high-risk pools.
“I’m running because I’m concerned about the direction of our country,” Kim said. “That legislation is something that is going to endanger tens of thousands in the Jersey 3rd ... and millions of people in the country.”
In related news, Democrats gearing up for a new round of battles against Republican efforts to do away with Barack Obama’s signature healthcare law are condemning a US Senate replacement bill being crafted by Republicans behind closed doors.
Senator Bernie Sanders urged Democrats on Sunday to do “everything they can” to oppose a Republican bill that for weeks has been drafted by party leaders in secret.
“My understanding is that it will be brought forth just immediately before we have to vote on it. This is completely unacceptable,” Sanders, an independent who is a member of the Democratic party leadership, told CBS’s “Face the Nation” program.
including the status of Jerusalem, Israeli settlement construction and the Palestinians’ demand for a sovereign nation.
Former Presidents Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama all tried and failed to achieve a peace deal.
The White House official — who was not authorized to speak publicly about the trip — said an agreement will take time, adding that there are likely to be many more visits by Kushner and Greenblatt to the region, as they seek common ground.
The Wall Street Journal first reported that Kushner was making the trip. (AP)
6 experts resign:
Six top health advisors have resigned from Donald Trump’s advisory council on HIV/AIDS, complaining that the US president doesn’t really care about combatting the illness.
In a letter published Friday in Newsweek, Scott Schoettes said the Trump administration has “no strategy” on AIDS and that he and his five colleagues will be more effective advocating for change from the outside.
Schoettes, counsel and HIV project director at Lambda Legal, resigned Tuesday from the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/ AIDS, along with Lucy Bradley-Springer, Gina Brown, Ulysses Burley III, Michelle Ogle and Grissel Granados. The council can have up to 25 members. “The Trump administration has no strategy to address the on-going HIV/AIDS epidemic, seeks zero input from experts to formulate HIV policy, and -- most concerning -- pushes legislation that will harm people living with HIV and halt or reverse important gains made in the fight against this disease,” Schoettes wrote. (AFP)