Schumer, Democrats Play 'Hardball' to Delay Republican Health Care Bill

But Senate Republicans who hail from states that expanded Medicaid under Obamacare say that would cut off vital resources for some of their most vulnerable constituents much too abruptly.

"Republicans are drafting this bill in secret because they're ashamed of it, plain and simple", said Chuck Schumer, the Senate minority leader, in a statement.

The governors called on Senators to work together across the aisle to come up with a better solution. All Senate Democrats are expected to oppose the legislation. They're also under enormous pressure to move as the Trump White House seeks a legislative win and the clock ticks on other priorities, from tax reform to funding the government and lifting the debt ceiling. Republicans are developing their health care plan in secret, completely forgoing the usual process of holding public committee hearings and having experts testify about proposed legislation.

WASHINGTON - The Republican effort to secretly craft a health care bill and whisk it through the Senate is drawing fire from members of both parties.

As Politico noted, while some Democrats in the Senate are planning to block lengthy committee hearings on Tuesday, it's not clear whether the whole of the party is committed to maintaining the standoff beyond the start of the week. Schumer said Democrats would not object to requests for unanimous consent on honorary resolutions, either.

Behind closed doors, a group of 13 GOP senators - including Sen.

The effort comes with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., hoping to weave together a bill dismantling much of former President Barack Obama's health care law so the Senate can vote on it before leaving for its July 4 recess.

"We're going to have a meeting on the Senate floor, all hundred of us, with an unlimited amendment process", McConnell said.

Republicans must grapple with several unresolved issues, including how quickly to phase out the expansion of the Medicaid program in the 2010 health law (PL 111-148, PL 111-152).

Even as McConnell downplays the secrecy, few Republicans appear to know what will be in the legislation.

The Republican National Committee blasted the Democrats' plan as a "pure partisan game aimed at placating the far-left".

"This radical departure from normal procedure, on a bill of such effect", Schumer said on the Senate floor, "leaves the Senate minority little choice but to depart from normal procedure as well".

Like many conservatives, Cruz believes that in order to bring down the cost of health insurance, lawmakers need to repeal as numerous Obamacare-era regulations as possible.

"If Senators Heller, Flake and Cruz, along with Governor Scott, get their way, hard-working Americans will pay the price while insurance companies and the rich get a tax break", DSCC spokesman David Bergstein said. Granted, that's if you don't get sick and die from a lack of health care before then.

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