The Senate's plan, like one passed by the House of Representatives, rolls back numerous provisions of Obamacare, including taking deep cuts from Medicaid program. Expect it to be a wild weekend on Capitol Hill.
The federal government's share of funding for Medicaid, which is jointly run with individual states, would fall over the course of seven years to end up at around 57 percent of the cost of that program, which offers health coverage to the poor. "Make sure we're taken care of here in the state of Nevada".
Heller, who faces re-election in 2018 in the Democratic-leaning state, said on Friday: "I can not support a piece of legislation that takes away insurance from tens of millions of Americans and hundreds of thousands of Nevadans".
"It'll be very hard to get me to a 'yes, '" Heller said.
Four conservative Republicans - a number large enough to stop the bill from passage - announced in the afternoon that they were withholding support. Most people who use Medicaid are pretty thrilled with it because, in a shocking turn of events, people really enjoy having affordable effective health insurance. These included maternity and hospital care, prescription drugs and mental health, to name a few. BRCA will result in many Americans-especially low- and moderate-income and older Americans-paying thousands more in premiums for skimpier health plans.
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Senator Paul is one of the reasons the GOP does not have the votes to push this through right now. Sens. Paul Rand, Ted Cruz, Ron Johnson and Mike Lee said they weren't weren't "ready" to vote yes, but were open to negotiating.
As he has multiple times since the ACA's passage in 2010, Obama conceded that the bill was less than flawless and vowed to support any Republican-backed bill that "is demonstrably better than the improvements we made to our health care system, that covers as many people at less cost". "We'll have to see".
He did not hold back his criticism of the Senate bill, and his concerns on the Medicaid cuts ranged from their impact on special needs schools to their effect on substance abuse programs.
Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV) is probably the most endangered Republican up for reelection in 2018. The bill would also bar using tax credits to buy coverage that includes abortions. It contains some key differences from the version the House passed last month.
The Congressional Budget Office has yet to release estimates on the Senate health care bill. Those additional funds would continue through 2020, then gradually fall and disappear entirely in 2024. "I hope they're being genuine about that".
Heller, meanwhile, was skeptical Friday that Senate leadership was going to be able to provide the concessions he would need to support the bill.
AP writer Regina Garcia Cano reported from Las Vegas.
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