"We're going to have a meeting on the Senate floor, all hundred of us, with an unlimited amendment process", McConnell said. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington. Sens. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., and Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., are using their profiles to publicly draw opposition to the health care bill, including a Facebook Live event this afternoon. It remains uncertain McConnell will be able to do that, but both parties respect his ability to keep his party unified and count votes. But GOP senators still disagree on a number of key issues, such as what to do with Obamacare's Medicaid expansion, taxes and tax credits.
"Some version of secrecy has to happen". Republicans have been working on their bill in private. "The general parameters of the bill were widely known".
This time, instead of committee hearings and votes, the focus is on 13 Senate Republicans who are doing most of the work, which has led Democrats to hammer on the idea that all of the GOP health care work is being done in secret.
"I always believe legislation is best crafted through the normal order", Sen Susan Collins, R-Maine, told the Portland Press Herald. There are enough of those senators, including Ohio's Rob Portman, West Virginia's Shelley Moore Capito and Colorado's Cory Gardner, to tank the bill outright if the Medicaid language does not satisfy them.
As Democrats made a series of motions that McConnell turned aside, Schumer twice asked the GOP leader to ensure Democrats they will have more than 10 hours to study the bill before the vote.
What's more, the Congressional Budget Office estimated that the House health care bill would result in 23 million fewer people with insurance in a decade, and it would leave many sicker and older Americans with much higher costs.
Early in 2009, a Gang of Six, three senators from each party, used secret talks to unsuccessfully seek compromise on an overall bill.
It will include trying to force votes aimed at drawing attention to the lack of transparency, such as committee hearings, on the GOP legislation.
Senate Democrats will protest the secretive process their Republican colleagues are using to develop their plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act by shutting down their branch of Congress' routine business, CNN reported on Monday.
In a letter, Democrats provided some Senate Republican leaders with a list of all 31 potential Senate rooms "to assist" Republicans in scheduling a hearing. Polls have said that a majority of Americans disapprove of the Obamacare replacement that has passed the House of Representatives and that Senate Republicans are now considering.
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