Clearing The House Is Just The First Step; GOP Plan Faces Significant Hurdles In The Senate
In the upper chamber, Republicans only claim a 52-48 majority, and many senators have already expressed their dismay at parts of the House's American Health Care Act. Democrats see opportunities to snag parts of the GOP plan. Meanwhile, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), who argues that the measure does not go far enough to repeal Obamacare, is among those who has raised constitutional issues.
The Washington Post:
Health-Care Overhaul Faces An Even Bigger Challenge In The Senate
Even if the House approves a GOP effort this week to repeal and replace key parts of the Affordable Care Act, the work of persuading the Senate to do the same is likely to be even harder. (Sullivan and Snell, 3/23)
Trump's Obamacare Repeal Concessions Likely Can't Pass Senate
Democrats say they are certain they can kill any language in the repeal bill that erases Obamacare’s mandate for minimum benefits in insurance plans. And top Republicans are making no promise that the last-ditch changes to win over conservatives will fly in the more centrist Senate, which is beginning to write its own health care plan. (Everett and Haberkorn, 3/23)
Senate GOP Hedges On ObamaCare Repeal Timeline
Senate Republicans are starting to publicly hedge on when they'll be able to repeal and replace ObamaCare as their House counterparts struggle to find a deal. On Thursday afternoon, the House delayed a vote on the bill that was originally scheduled for later that day. Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.), who has been skeptical of the House bill, said after a caucus launch that he was told that senators would have "more time" to consider a repeal and replace bill and that the House might not vote until next week. (Carney, 3/23)
Elizabeth Warren Says GOP Health Plan Helps 'The Millionaires And Billionaires'
Rachel Martin speaks with Sen. Elizabeth Warren about the health care debate, Neil Gorsuch's confirmation hearings, and the investigations into connections between Russia and the Trump campaign. (Martin, 3/24)
Even If The GOP Passes A Health Care Bill, Some Wonder If It'll Be Constitutional
If Republicans rescind the Affordable Care Act mandate that everyone buy health insurance, will their bill be constitutional? GOP Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky is raising that question, citing the reasoning of Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., who wrote the 2012 opinion that upheld the individual mandate penalties in the 2010 health care overhaul. In his opinion in NFIB v. Sebelius, Roberts said the health care law essentially violated the Constitution’s Commerce Clause that gives Congress the power to regulate interstate commerce because it forced people to buy health insurance. But he wrote the requirement that individuals pay a penalty for not obtaining health insurance “may be reasonably characterized as a tax” and let it slide. (Lesniewski, 3/27)