Senate Republicans have been conducting negotiations over their version of the American Health Care Act in secret, and now Senate Democrats have a tentative plan to fight back.
Teddy Davis of CNN says on Twitter: “Senate Dems are weighing whether to bring the chamber’s business to a halt next week in an effort to pry open deliberations on health care.”
Senate Dems are weighing whether to bring the chamber's business to a halt next week in an effort to pry open deliberations on health care.
— Ted Davis (@TedDavisSAV) June 17, 2017
Senate Democrats have threatened to bring government operations to a halt on important issues in the past under the Trump Administration. For instance, Senate Democrats voiced support at one point for the idea of opting to shut down the government instead of allowing for funds to be approved for President Trump’s U.S./ Mexico border wall.
In this case, a small group of top Republicans are deliberating in secret over a measure that could have life and death implications for millions of people should it pass.
The Congressional Budget Office’s “score” of the House’s version of the American Health Care Act estimated that the measure would leave some 14 million people without health coverage in just the first year following its passage. There was talk of the Senate butchering the AHCA so that such was no longer the case, but that talk quickly faded and morphed into closed door sessions and reassurances from Senate GOP leadership that they wouldn’t change the House bill too substantially.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has promised that the Senate will get the AHCA passed before their July 4 recess, and if Senate Democrats grind the Senate to a halt next week, it’s not clear if that will be able to happen.
The bill only needs 51 votes to pass due to a procedural move recently invoked by Republican leadership. Normally, it would need 60 votes, but it will be voted upon as a “budget reconciliation measure” rather than as a new thing entirely.
There are at least a few Senators on the fence who could swing the vote and make the AHCA fail, and in the uncertain number of days that we have left before the Senate AHCA vote, much of the public is working to sway the opinions of their Senators.
Twitter thinks, unsurprisingly, that Senate Democrats shutting down the Senate is a great idea.
ABOUT DAMN TIME
— alisa perren (@aperren) June 17, 2017
Why are they just "weighing"? Do it already!
— ca_hockey_girl ? (@hockeygirl_CA) June 17, 2017
What do they have to lose? The GOP plan is pure cruelty.
— Jeremy James (@JRyanJam) June 17, 2017
get on with it, @SenateDems! lives are at stake…literally
— J. McCavendish (@limitlesskait) June 17, 2017
I called my senators specifically asking for this—what McConnell & his ACHA squad are doing is reprehensible & unjust.
— chulesee (@chulesee) June 17, 2017
— Gabe Very Legal and Very Cool Rosenberg (@Gaber205) June 17, 2017
@deray They better get spinal implants before spinelessness becomes an untreatable preexisting condition!
— Jason Lindquist (@0xEnder) June 17, 2017
— DanteBenutoDOSomething (@dantebenuto) June 17, 2017
— Claire Blechman (@cblechman) June 17, 2017
Featured Image via Zach Gibson/Getty Images