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20 June 2017, 12:13 | Guillermo Sutton
Evan Vucci AP
Pressed on the lack of committee hearings or input by a reporter, he described the Senate GOP working group as "a committee of the whole". The group is chaired by Representative Mark Walker. "A representative from McConnell's office told them staff schedules were too busy, according to representatives of several of the organizations", the Times reported.
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. This includes the Senate leadership, three committee chairmen, and others, including Sens.
Republicans have held no committee meetings or votes on the measure, which McConnell is trying to produce from numerous private meetings among GOP senators. Mike Rounds, R-S.D.
So far, Democrats have had a tough time getting their message out as the Russian Federation investigations are dominating news coverage and reporters are talking primarily to Republicans in a health debate that relies only on their votes. The 72-hour event will begin Wednesday at 5 pm with a sit-in at Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., and comes with ticket prices ranging from $250 to $2,500.
As the ongoing controversy over President Donald Trump and Russian Federation continues to dominate headlines, Senate Republicans have been secretly crafting a bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act.
"The Senate is working in secret and rushing to pass a bill that will closely mirror the AHCA passed by the House, which strips care from 23 million people, raises costs for millions more and punishes kids, seniors and people with disabilities through steep cuts to Medicaid", Robert Restuccia, executive director of Community Catalyst, added. The legislation has yet to be receive Congressional Budget Office (CBO) score and has remained mysterious to the majority of the chamber.
The bill was designed in a way that it would be passed only by a simple majority in Congress as opposed to a 60-vote majority for most laws. But details are murky thanks to the closed process.
Portman's coffee meetings are usually quiet, uncontroversial affairs attended by business groups or curious tourists, but Neiman sees it as a rare opportunity for activists to tell the Senator not to vote for Republicans' health care bill. Murkowski has said she wants to make sure that the Senate bill's tax credits are more generous for those living in rural places like Alaska than the House bill's were. But scheduling concerns are not the only reason Republicans have given over why they have kept the process so secretive. Now he's telling senators to modify it, thus presumably making it more palatable despite the millions of people it would hurt.
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