“Senator Cornyn just admitted that the American people’s healthcare is in fact the last priority of Republicans in Washington and Donald Trump. They are so obsessed with implementing their partisan agenda that don’t care about the pain their healthcare vote would inflict on the country. Cornyn may not be one of the 22 million Americans who stand to lose their insurance under Trumpcare, or one of the 32 million Americans whose coverage would be threatened by an outright repeal of Obamacare - but dismissing this bill’s consequences so casually is a slap in the face to every constituent who would be harmed by this plan,” said American Bridge spokesperson Andrew Bates.
The Hill: Cornyn: Knowing health plan ahead of vote is ‘luxury we don’t have’
BY PETER SULLIVAN – 07/20/17 02:41 PM EDT
Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas), the No. 2 Senate Republican, on Thursday said knowing what the Republican healthcare bill will be before a procedural vote is a “luxury we don’t have.”
Senate Republicans are divided on a path forward for their healthcare bill.
The two leading options are either taking up a bill that repeals ObamaCare but delays a replacement, or some updated version of the Senate’s repeal-and replace-measure. Both of those bills do not have the votes to pass at the moment, however, though negotiations on the second measure are ongoing.
Senate Republican leaders say they are planning a vote next week to begin debate on the House’s ObamaCare repeal bill, which would allow them to begin debating amendments.
But some senators are reluctant to even vote for the initial procedural motion until they known what they will be voting on.
“I will only vote to proceed to repeal legislation if I am confident there is a replacement plan that addresses my concerns,” Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) tweeted Tuesday.
Asked about those concerns, Cornyn told reporters, “Yeah, but it’s a luxury we don’t have.”
Leaders are arguing that wavering senators should just vote to begin debate, and then the legislative process will work its way from there.
“You can’t debate something that you don’t initiate the debate on,” Cornyn said, noting lawmakers could offer amendments on the floor.
“If anybody’s got a better idea., they can offer that and get a vote on it, and in the end 50 people are going to decide whether we’re going to have an outcome or not,” he added. “Any three people can kill the bill at the end if they’re not satisfied.”
Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), the No. 3 Republican, said that it will be up to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to decide what to vote on.
“It’s a judgment call the leader will make at some point,” Thune said.
Published: Jul 20, 2017