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- 07/17/17--12:39: _Police found a note...
- 07/17/17--13:59: _Trump calls McCain ...
- 07/17/17--18:29: _McConnell admits de...
- 07/18/17--06:34: _Trump contradicts h...
- 07/18/17--06:53: _The Senate Republic...
- 07/18/17--08:04: _Paul Ryan threw Rep...
- 07/18/17--09:18: _In one simple quote...
- 07/18/17--09:22: _Schumer says repeal...
- 07/18/17--10:22: _For the 2nd time in...
- 07/18/17--11:28: _Trump says the Repu...
- 07/18/17--12:43: _Hugh Hewitt compare...
- 07/18/17--14:42: _11 governors releas...
- 07/18/17--14:55: _An 'unmitigated dis...
- 07/18/17--17:08: _Here's what happens...
- 07/19/17--06:23: _Trump promises GOP ...
- 07/19/17--08:44: _Trump rails against...
- 07/19/17--10:07: _It sounds like the ...
- 07/19/17--10:10: _KRAUTHAMMER: GOP he...
- 07/19/17--10:34: _TRUMP CHANGES TUNE ...
- 07/19/17--11:50: _'He wants to remain...
- 07/19/17--10:10: KRAUTHAMMER: GOP healthcare effort is a 'historic' 'epic fail'
A note left on the door of Republican senator Dean Heller's office in Nevada reportedly threatened the life of the lawmaker unless he votes against the GOP healthcare bill in the Senate, law enforcement sources told Jon Ralston of news site The Nevada Independent on Monday.
Police were called to Heller's office, where they found the note, after a burglary alarm was triggered.
A Las Vegas police source told Ralston that the letter was written by someone claiming they would lose their healthcare and die if the bill, named the Better Care Reconciliation Act, passed and he "would take Heller with him" if the senator voted for it.
Las Vegas Police Department officials have confirmed that they are investigating "a threatening note addressed to Senator Heller," but have declined to release the contents of the note due to the ongoing investigation.
Heller is seen as a key player in the debate over the healthcare bill and forcefully opposed the original version of the BCRA. He has said he is undecided on the new version of the bill released Thursday.
Heller's position is especially precarious given the fact he is up for re-election in 2018 in a state that Hillary Clinton won in the 2016 presidential election. Additionally, Nevada's popular governor Republican Brian Sandoval has come out repeatedly against the BCRA.
As of Monday, Republican senators Susan Collins and Rand Paul have said they will vote "no" on a key procedural vote that would allow the BCRA to be brought to the floor. Heller's support is key because if a third GOP lawmaker defects on the bill, it will fail.
Opponents of the bill have raised concerns that the projected increase in the number of people without health insurance due to the rollback of Medicaid funding will lead to deaths. The claim is based on a study that showed Medicaid decreased mortality in enrollees.
The vote will not take place until at least next week as John McCain will remain in Arizona to recover from eye surgery over the weekend.
Here's the full police statement via the Nevada Independent:
"The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department received a call from an alarm company representative reporting a burglary alarm at the main entrance of an office building where Senator Dean Heller’s office is located. The preliminary investigation by patrol officers determined that a burglary did not occur to the main building or to Senator Heller’s office. However, a threatening note addressed to Senator Heller was discovered near the door to his office. Officers took a report for Threatening or Obscene Letters or Writing (NRS 207.180). The LVMPD has an on-going investigation into this incident."
President Donald Trump said that he hopes Sen. John McCain recovers quickly from his recent surgery, calling the veteran Republican lawmaker a "crusty voice in Washington" and noting that the GOP Senate healthcare bill needs his vote to pass.
McCain, who has been an outspoken critic of Trump, underwent brain surgery on Friday to remove a blood clot above his left eye. He's recuperating in his home state of Arizona and his physicians say the procedure was successful and that he is doing well.
"I can tell you we hope John McCain gets better very soon because we miss him," Trump said during an address at the White House, adding to laughter, "He's a crusty voice in Washington. Plus, we need his vote."
McCain's office suggested in a statement last week that the senator would be out for a week. But two neurosurgeons told The New York Times that the typical recovery time for such a procedure was "a few weeks" or more.
"He'll be back," Trump said. "And he will be back sooner than somebody else would be back. He'll be back soon."
Senate Republicans are delaying a vote on their healthcare bill until McCain returns to Washington. Two Republican senators, Susan Collins of Maine and Rand Paul of Kentucky, have already said they will not vote to proceed on the measure, meaning that Republicans need McCain to have a chance at reaching the necessary 50-vote threshold.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had hoped to hold a procedural vote on the bill, the Better Care Reconciliation Act, next week.
"While John is recovering, the Senate will continue our work on legislative items and nominations, and will defer consideration of the Better Care Act," McConnell said in a statement on Saturday.
Watch the clip below:
Two Republican senators effectively issued a deathblow to the latest Senate GOP healthcare legislation on Monday night, throwing into doubt the future of the Republican effort to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.
Sens. Jerry Moran of Kansas and Mike Lee of Utah announced Monday evening that they would vote against a motion to proceed to debate on the bill.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had sought to hold a vote this week, but the plan was delayed in part because Sen. John McCain was recovering from surgery to remove a blood clot. McCain's recovery was expected to push the vote back at least a week.
McConnell could afford to lose only two senators and still have the bill move on. Two other GOP lawmakers — Sens. Rand Paul of Kentucky and Susan Collins of Maine — had already expressed their opposition, bringing the total to four.
In a statement, Moran criticized the secretive process used to draft the bill and the fact it could roll back protections for people with preexisting conditions.
"We must now start fresh with an open legislative process to develop innovative solutions that provide greater personal choice, protections for preexisting conditions, increased access, and lower overall costs for Kansans," Moran said.
Lee, on the other hand, said the bill did not do enough to roll back regulations from the ACA, the law better known as Obamacare. The Utah lawmaker supported an amendment introduced by Sen. Ted Cruz that would have allowed insurers to sell plans that did not adhere to two major Obamacare rules.
"In addition to not repealing all of the Obamacare taxes, it doesn’t go far enough in lowering premiums for middle-class families; nor does it create enough free space from the most costly Obamacare regulations," Lee said in a statement.
McConnell admitted defeat in a statement he released Monday night:
"Regretfully, it is now apparent that the effort to repeal and immediately replace the failure of Obamacare will not be successful.
"So, in the coming days, the Senate will vote to take up the House bill with the first amendment in order being what a majority of the Senate has already supported in 2015 and that was vetoed by then-President Obama: a repeal of Obamacare with a two-year delay to provide for a stable transition period to a patient-centered healthcare system that gives Americans access to quality, affordable care."
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer also said he was willing to work with Republicans on a bipartisan approach:
"This second failure of Trumpcare is proof positive that the core of this bill is unworkable. Rather than repeating the same failed, partisan process yet again, Republicans should start from scratch and work with Democrats on a bill that lowers premiums, provides long-term stability to the markets, and improves our healthcare system."
The Better Care Reconciliation Act was on the verge of collapse earlier Monday, but no one wanted to be the deciding vote to kill the bill, as evidenced by Moran and Lee's releasing their statements at the same time.
Reactions came in quickly Monday, with President Donald Trump tweeting that Republicans should pass a simple repeal of Obamacare and work on a replacement later.
"Republicans should just REPEAL failing ObamaCare now & work on a new Healthcare Plan that will start from a clean slate. Dems will join in!" Trump tweeted.
"It's time for a new approach when it comes to #RepealandReplace of Obamacare," Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, who has introduced his own healthcare legislation, said Monday night.
McCain also issued a statement saying Republicans should restart their attempts on healthcare using a transparent, bipartisan process.
"The Congress must now return to regular order, hold hearings, receive input from members of both parties, and heed the recommendations of our nation's governors so that we can produce a bill that finally provides Americans with access to quality and affordable healthcare," McCain said.
Now that there are enough public votes to block the bill, a wave of moderates who were against the original version of the BCRA may emerge to come out against the newly updated bill, according to Rick Weissenstein at the Cowen Washington Research Group.
"Over the next several days, one of two things is likely," Weissenstein said in a note to clients on Monday. "Either McConnell finds a way to bring Moran and Lee back into the fold or several more Senators join the 'NOs' and McConnell is forced to pull the bill. At this point the later scenario seems more likely and we are now ready to join our colleague Chris Krueger in saying we think the bill is unlikely to pass."
Another big issue for undecided lawmakers had been the release of the Congressional Budget Office's score for the updated BCRA. The original score, which estimated that 22 million more Americans would be without health insurance in 2026 under the BCRA than under the current system, was a key point of contention for centrist Republicans who opposed the first iteration of the healthcare bill.
The new score was originally set to be released Monday, but, given the delay for the vote, it was also pushed back. It's unclear when it will be released, but reports suggest it could be as late as next week.
President Donald Trump on Tuesday weighed in on the apparent failure of the Senate Republican healthcare bill via Twitter.
"We were let down by all of the Democrats and a few Republicans," the president tweeted. "Most Republicans were loyal, terrific & worked really hard. We will return!"
The Senate bill, the Better Care Reconciliation Act, fell apart Monday night when two more GOP senators — Jerry Moran of Kansas and Mike Lee of Utah — said they would not support a vote to bring the bill to the floor of the Senate for debate.
That left the Republican leadership with four defections on the procedural vote, called a motion to proceed — more than the three needed to block the bill. Moran and Lee joined Sens. Susan Collins of Maine and Rand Paul of Kentucky as opponents of the motion.
According to Politico, Trump was blindsided by the defections of Moran and Lee. The president was reportedly in the middle of a strategy dinner for the bill when the announcement was made, and he told Republicans they would look like "dopes" if they did not repeal the Affordable Care Act, President Barack Obama's signature healthcare law.
In a follow-up tweet on Tuesday, Trump once again advocated the failure of the ACA, better known as Obamacare, to bring Democrats and the public around on a Republican plan.
"As I have always said, let ObamaCare fail and then come together and do a great healthcare plan," Trump tweeted. "Stay tuned!"
The new tweets, however, seemed to contradict Trump's insistence on Monday night that Republicans immediately repeal Obamacare.
"Republicans should just REPEAL failing ObamaCare now & work on a new Healthcare Plan that will start from a clean slate. Dems will join in!" Trump said.
Additionally, Trump suggested that Republicans should get rid of the legislative filibuster — generally known as the "nuclear option"— to make it easier to pass any Obamacare replacement bill.
"The Senate must go to a 51 vote majority instead of current 60 votes," Trump tweeted on Tuesday. "Even parts of full Repeal need 60. 8 Dems control Senate. Crazy!"
Republicans, who hold 52 seats in the Senate, were using a process that would have required only 50 votes to pass the bill, since Vice President Mike Pence could break a tie. Despite this, Republicans still could not get the bill through.
If Trump were to end the executive branch's funding of Obamacare's cost-sharing-reduction payments, a critical provision that helps offset costs for insurers, it would most likely lead to an exodus of insurers from the individual exchanges and skyrocketing costs for Americans in those markets, effectively causing the collapse of the law.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Monday night that he would abandon the tactic of attempting to repeal and replace Obamacare at the same time and advance a repeal-only bill that would go into effect in two years, in which Congress could come together on a new plan.
The Republican effort to repeal and replace Obamacare in one fell swoop crumbled on Monday, and another revival doesn't appear likely.
Republican Sens. Jerry Moran and Mike Lee announced they would oppose a key procedural step to bring the Senate GOP bill, the Better Care Reconciliation Act, to the floor for debate. The two joined GOP Sens. Susan Collins and Rand Paul in opposing the motion.
Republicans needed 50 votes — no more than two defections — to move the bill forward.
Politico reported that President Donald Trump was with other GOP members at a strategy dinner for the bill when Lee and Moran announced their intention to oppose it, blindsiding the White House.
Immediately after the announcement, other Republicans called for the conference to abandon the current track and work on a bipartisan approach.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is now scrambling to attempt a repeal-only, replace-later strategy, which could be popular with conservative-leaning members but lose the more moderate side of the conference.
Experts and analysts say that any momentum on a GOP healthcare bill is dead for now, meaning one of Republicans' biggest promises of the past seven years will most likely remain unfulfilled, at least through next year's midterm elections.
Wheels fall off
Moran and Lee were the nails in the coffin for the BCRA, which already faced an uncertain future after multiple revisions and a rash of defections.
McConnell found himself stuck as the BCRA faced resistance from both ends of the Republican conference. Moderates didn't like its cuts to Medicaid and the projections of large coverage losses. Conservatives were frustrated that the regulatory structure and taxes from Obamacare, the healthcare law officially called the Affordable Care Act, were left in place.
Cobbling together a workable compromise became nearly impossible, since any attempt to win over one side invariably left the other less likely to jump on board.
Given the cover provided by Moran and Lee, more Republican senators may soon emerge in opposition to the BCRA and any other healthcare-reform efforts, said Chris Krueger, an analyst at the Cowen Washington Research Group.
"We would be shocked if four was the floor for GOP defections," Krueger wrote in a note Tuesday. "The Rubicon was crossed, and we suspect a number of other Senate Republicans will begin the bail. Watch McConnell and the Trump Twitter Machine."
Appetite for 'repeal only'
The BCRA's failure has pushed McConnell toward a bold backup plan: a vote on a repeal-only bill that would give Congress two years to come up with a replacement.
Since the bill would go through the budget reconciliation process, only certain aspects of the ACA could be repealed, but they are some of the most important: funding for tax credits to buy insurance, as well as for the Medicaid expansion, and the individual mandate to purchase insurance.
A similar idea taken up by the House in 2015 was scored by the Congressional Budget Office earlier this year. It projected that 32 million more people would go without insurance by 2026 than under the current system if there were no replacement in effect. The CBO separately projected that 22 million and 23 million more people would be uninsured under the Senate and House replacement bills, respectively.
Given the massive projected coverage losses, it's unclear whether the more moderate-leaning wing of the party would sign on to such a plan. Conservatives could also be repelled by the trade-off in voting to move such a bill forward for consideration.
Already on Tuesday, several Republican senators have expressed resistance to the repeal-only plan, including Sen. Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia.
"My position on this issue is driven by its impact on West Virginians," Capito said. "With that in mind, I cannot vote to repeal Obamacare without a replacement plan that addresses my concerns and the needs of West Virginians."
Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio also expressed concerns in an interview on Tuesday morning.
"If it is a bill that simply repeals, I believe it will add even more uncertainty and the potential for Ohioans to pay even higher premiums, higher deductibles," Portman told reporters.
Greg Valliere, a chief strategist and longtime political analyst at Horizon Investments, said it probably wouldn't happen.
"Mitch McConnell probably will not succeed with his Plan B — a repeal of Obamacare, taking effect in two years," Valliere wrote in a note to clients on Tuesday. "Theoretically, a replacement bill could pass during that period, but if the Republicans couldn't agree on a replacement for the past seven years, what makes anyone think they can do it in the next two?"
McConnell could pressure holdouts by telling them they voted in 2015 for the same measure, which was ultimately vetoed by President Barack Obama. But that would still be unlikely to sway recalcitrant members.
"The difference between 2015 and now is that Republicans are shooting with real bullets," one GOP strategist told Business Insider before Monday's developments. "When you're doing that these senators want to make sure there aren't big coverage losses in their states and they're not hurting constituents."
House Speaker Paul Ryan blamed Senate Republicans for the party's failure to pass an Obamacare repeal and replacement bill, saying he hopes House Republicans' "friends in the Senate can figure out how they can get a bill passed."
Ryan made the comments at a press conference Tuesday morning, the day after two more GOP lawmakers announced they would not support the bill, effectively killing it.
Ryan, who led the effort to pass the House version of the healthcare bill, said that the House had fulfilled its responsibilities and that the effort to replace former President Barack Obama's signature legislation now rests fully on the Senate.
"We've done this in the House — we passed our simultaneous repeal and replace bill,"Ryan said. "We think that's the solution, we think that's the best way to go, and so we're just gonna have to wait and hope that our friends in the Senate can figure out how they can get a bill passed, get it into conference, or whatever, and get something passed."
Ryan said he and his House colleagues are "proud" of the House bill, also known as the American Health Care Act, which Republican lawmakers in the Senate have attempted to rewrite in an effort to gain support both from hard-right conservatives who want a full Obamacare repeal and more moderate members who oppose deep cuts to Medicaid. The AHCA received very low approval ratings in polls.
"We passed a bill that we think is sufficient to addressing the real problem, to keeping our promise," Ryan said.
Watch a clip of the press briefing here:
Ryan: House already passed repeal and replace https://t.co/xtyAWcIVeP— Meg Wagner (@megwagner) July 18, 2017
Once again, it appears that the Republican attempt to repeal and replace Obamacare is dead for now.
The Better Care Reconciliation Act lost the support of two more Republican senators on Monday night, effectively crushing the bill's chances of passage.
Unlike after first failure in the House and misstep in the Senate, GOP leadership has responded with a distinct change in tactics this time. Instead of going with a simultaneous repeal and replace, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said he would look to advance a bill that repeals all of Obamacare's funding in two years while Republicans work on a replacement.
Despite the tactic being modeled on a 2015 repeal bill that passed both the House and Senate with little Republican resistance, the prevailing view is that the attempt will also fail to gain enough GOP support to pass the upper chamber. In fact, two members — Susan Collins of Maine and Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia — have already come out against this strategy.
So despite frequent promises over seven years to repeal President Barack Obama's signature healthcare law, there looks to be a good chance that much of its structure will remain in place.
The dilemma for Republicans is simple, a GOP strategist and former Senate leadership aide told Business Insider: this time it's for real.
"The difference between 2015 and now is that Republicans are shooting with real bullets," a GOP strategist told Business Insider last week. "When you're doing that these senators want to make sure there aren't big coverage losses in their states and they're not hurting constituents."
Essentially, everyone expected the 2015 repeal bill to be vetoed — so they didn't have to worry about the Congressional Budget Office's projection that 32 million fewer people would have coverage in 10 years than under the current system.
Republicans didn't have to worry about getting pegged with any market instability or damage to the healthcare system. Now that they're in power, the vote isn't symbolic anymore. And their bill was deeply unpopular with the American public.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, a New York Democrat, slammed a Republican proposal to repeal Obamacare before passing a replacement healthcare bill, calling the potential move "just as cruel, if not crueler."
President Donald Trump urged GOP lawmakers to repeal former President Barack Obama's signature legislation immediately after two more GOP lawmakers announced on Monday night that they would not support the Senate bill, effectively killing it.
"Republicans should just REPEAL failing ObamaCare now & work on a new Healthcare Plan that will start from a clean slate,"Trump tweeted. "Dems will join in."
Schumer rejected Trump's call for a "repeal and delay," which Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced his support for on Monday night.
"Make no mistake about it: passing repeal without a replacement would be a disaster," Schumer said in a speech on the Senate floor on Tuesday morning. "Our healthcare system would implode, millions would lose coverage ... our healthcare system would be in such a deep hole that repair would be nearly impossible."
The minority leader used an analogy to illustrate his point.
"It's like if our healthcare system was a patient who came in and needed some medicine," Schumer said. "The Republicans propose surgery. The operation was a failure. Now the Republicans are proposing a second surgery that will surely kill the patient. Medicine is needed — bipartisan medicine — not a second surgery."
Schumer argued that Republicans should scrap the Better Care Reconciliation Act and work with Democrats to improve Obamacare.
"It's time to move on, it's time to start over," Schumer said. "Republicans should work with Democrats on a bill that lowers premiums, provides long-term stability to the markets, and improves our healthcare system."
He also rejected the GOP's claim that Democrats have been unwilling to work across the aisle on healthcare, arguing that Trump, along with Republican leaders in the House and Senate, began the policy debate by rejecting input from Democrats.
Schumer said his party is willing to work with the GOP as long as they "abandon cuts to Medicaid, abandon huge tax breaks for the wealthy, and agree to go through the regular order."
"The door is open right now, Republican leadership only needs to walk through it, as many Republican members are urging them," he said. "Republicans don't need to wreak havoc on our healthcare system first in order to get Democrats to the table — we're ready to sit down right now."
Watch a clip of Schumer's statement here:
Schumer: “Passing repeal without a replacement would be a disaster. Our health care system would implode.” https://t.co/DJOoV5JIwK— Bradd Jaffy (@BraddJaffy) July 18, 2017
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's backup plan for his healthcare overhaul has already come apart less then 24 hours after he introduced it.
Sen. Lisa Murkowski on Tuesday became the third GOP senator to publicly announce an intent to vote against a motion to proceed, a key procedural vote, for a bill that would only repeal the Affordable Care Act, the law better known as Obamacare.
"I said in January that we should not repeal without a replacement," Murkowski told reporters on Tuesday. "And just an indefinite hold on this just creates more chaos and confusion."
Murkowski joined Sens. Susan Collins of Maine and Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia in defecting from the repeal-only plan.
"I do not think that it's constructive to repeal a law that is so interwoven within our healthcare system without having a replacement plan in place," Collins said in a statement. "We can't just hope that we will pass a replacement within the next two years. Repealing without a replacement would create great uncertainty for individuals who rely on the ACA and cause further turmoil in the insurance markets."
Capito echoed those concerns.
"My position on this issue is driven by its impact on West Virginians," Capito said. "With that in mind, I cannot vote to repeal Obamacare without a replacement plan that addresses my concerns and the needs of West Virginians."
Other members of the conference, including Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio, said they were worried about the repeal-only method but did not explicitly state their intention to vote against a motion to proceed.
While the repeal would not go into effect for two years, theoretically giving Congress time to come up with a replacement, many experts predicted the uncertainty would cause chaos in the insurance markets.
Additionally, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office projected that a repeal-only bill would cause 32 million more Americans to be without health insurance in 2026 compared with the current system.
In a press conference following the news, McConnell mostly focused on the inability to get to 50 votes on the original repeal and replace plan.
"Everybody's given it their best shot, and as of today, we simply do not have 50 senators who agree on what can replace the existing law," McConnell told reporters.
When asked about the three votes against the repeal-only bill, McConnell deferred and said only that he planned to have a vote on it in the coming weeks.
The majority leader was also asked about what he would tell Republican voters after no being able to repeal Obamacare.
"Well, we have a new Supreme Court justice," McConnell said.
The rejection of the repeal-only plan comes after Republican Sens. Jerry Moran of Kansas and Mike Lee of Utah announced they would vote against a motion to proceed on the Senate Republican leadership's repeal-and-replace bill, named the Better Care Reconciliation Act.
Some GOP lawmakers have suggested that the failure of the BCRA means they should work with Democrats to try to stabilize insurance markets and improve the existing healthcare system rather than try to replace it.
President Donald Trump lamented the inability of Senate Republicans to pass their healthcare bill, but said that coming up short was still "pretty impressive."
"You had 52 people, you had 4 no's," Trump said during a meeting at the White House on Tuesday. "Now, we might have had another one, someone in there. But the vote would have been if you look at it, 48-4. That's a pretty impressive vote by any standard. Yet you have a vote of 48-4 or something like that and you need more. That's pretty tough."
The bill, named the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA), was going through the budget reconciliation process, meaning it needed only 50 votes for it to move forward — with Vice President Mike Pence serving as a tiebreaker. Republicans control 52 seats in the Senate.
Additionally, since no Democrats supported the bill, the actual vote would have been at least 48 to 52.
The back-up plan now, Trump said, is to "let Obamacare fail" and pin the blame on Democrats.
"We're not going to own it, I'm not going to own it," Trump said. "I can tell you the Republicans are not going to own it. We'll let Obamacare fail and then the Democrats are going to come to us and they are going to say 'how do we fix it, how do we fix it' or 'how do we come up with a new plan?'"
According to a poll by The Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonpartisan health policy think tank, 59% of Americans think Trump and Republicans are "responsible for any problems" with the healthcare system going forward. Only 30% said they would blame Obama and the Democrats.
This comes as another chapter in Trump's rapidly evolving response to the BCRA's failure. The president tweeted Monday night that Republicans should try an immediate repeal of Obamacare, before following up on Tuesday morning with tweets advocating for allowing the insurance markets from the law to collapse and then working with Democrats.
Trump said he did not blame any of the Republican defectors from the bill, but was surprised that Sens. Jerry Moran and Mike Lee announced their opposition on Monday night.
"I was very surprised when the two folks came out last night because we thought they were in fairly good shape but they did," Trump said. "You know, everybody has their own reason."
Trump also said he was disappointed by the sinking of the BCRA, since the Republicans had campaigned on the repeal of Obamacare for so long.
"We've had a lot of victories but haven't had a victory on health care," Trump told reporters. "We are disappointed. I am very disappointed because again even as a civilian for seven years on health care, I've been hearing about repeal and replace and Obamacare is a total disaster."
The statement came at nearly the exact same time as Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska became the third GOP senator to say they would vote against the motion to proceed on a straight repeal and replace later proposal. Murkowski joined Sens. Susan Collins and Shelley Moore Capito in rejecting the motion, effectively killing that tactic as well.
Conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt called out the group of Republican senators who have refused to vote for the GOP healthcare bill, comparing them to a "Games of Thrones" kill list and promising to campaign against them.
"We know the list to blame. It's like #AryaStark list. And it just keeps getting longer: Heller, Johnson, then Collins and Paul, then Lee and Moran and we will add the 'no' votes on 'RepealPlus2Years," Hewitt wrote in a series of tweets on Tuesday, referring to the "Game of Thrones" character Arya Stark, who keeps a running list of people she wants to kill.
Republican Sens. Dean Heller, Ron Johnson, Susan Collins, Rand Paul, Mike Lee, and Jerry Moran have all announced that they will not support the Better Care Reconciliation Act, effectively killing the bill.
Hewitt was critical of the group, calling them "cavalier about those w/o coverage, about their promises, about costs," and argued the Republican lawmakers will have a tough time being reelected.
During his Tuesday radio show featuring an interview with North Dakota Republican Sen. John Thune, Hewitt laid particular blame on Heller, the Nevada senator who has refused to support any Obamacare replacement bill that, in Heller's words, "takes insurance away from tens of millions of Americans and hundreds of thousands of Nevadans."
"I think Dean Heller is doomed unless this thing moves on," Hewitt told Thune. "I’ll be campaigning against him every single day. Is there a reality check? Do people understand ... how outraged the base is?"
In a tweet, Hewitt said he would rather Heller be replaced by a Democrat than have him serve another term after saying he'd vote against the BCRA and a full repeal of Obamacare.
Hewitt also predicted that his listeners would stop donating money to the National Republican Senatorial Committee if the Obamacare replacement bill fails to pass.
"I don’t believe any of my listeners will give a dime to the National Republican Senatorial Committee if this fails," Hewitt said. "I just wanted to tell you that so you can relay that to the caucus — not one dime."
Moran and we will add the "no" votes on "RepealPlus2Years. They are cavalier about those w/o coverage, about their promises, about costs etc— Hugh Hewitt (@hughhewitt) July 18, 2017
But each has an eye on re-election. Apparently unaware it is #TARPx10— Hugh Hewitt (@hughhewitt) July 18, 2017
SEE ALSO: For the 2nd time in less than 24 hours, Republicans' healthcare plans have gone down in flames http://www.businessinsider.com/republican-health-care-plan-obamacare-repeal-only-bill-blocked-2017-7
SEE ALSO: Paul Ryan threw Republican senators under the bus on their healthcare failure http://www.businessinsider.com/house-speaker-paul-ryan-healthcare-senate-republicans-blame-2017-7
A bipartisan group of governors released a statement on Tuesday rejecting President Donald Trump and Republican lawmakers' calls to repeal Obamacare without a replacement bill and urging Republicans and Democrats to work together to improve the existing healthcare law.
"The Senate should immediately reject efforts to 'repeal' the current system and replace sometime later,"they wrote, noting that the move "could leave millions of Americans without coverage."
The group of governors, the majority of whom are from states that expanded Medicaid under Obamacare, includes five Republicans — John Kasich of Ohio, Charlie Baker of Massachusetts, Larry Hogan of Maryland, Brian Sandoval of Nevada, and Phil Scott of Vermont — five Democrats — Steve Bullock of Montana, John Bel Edwards of Louisiana, John Hickenlooper of Colorado, Tom Wolfe of Pennsylvania, and Terry McAuliffe of Virginia — and one independent, Bill Walker of Alaska.
Proud of the 11 Republican and Democrat governors who have pulled together to share an important message on health care reform. pic.twitter.com/IcmUyM4m4g— John Kasich (@JohnKasich) July 18, 2017
The governors argued that lawmakers on both sides of the aisle should work in a bipartisan way to lower healthcare costs and stabilize the private markets that Obamacare recipients use to purchase their health insurance, also known as the Obamacare exchanges.
"The next best step is for both parties to come together and do what we can all agree on: fix our unstable insurance markets," they wrote, adding that governors must be "brought to the table to provide input."
Ohio Gov. John Kasich, a 2016 Republican presidential candidate, also published an op-ed in The New York Times on Tuesday calling for a bipartisan effort to shore up the marketplace before reforming Medicaid, the government health insurance program for low-income Americans.
"After two failed attempts at reform, the next step is clear: Congress should first focus on fixing the Obamacare exchanges before it takes on Medicaid," Kasich wrote. "For all its faults, at least Medicaid is currently a stable system for those who need it. The exchanges are anything but, and need immediate improvements."
Kasich was adamant that a solution to the country's healthcare issues must be bipartisan in order to succeed.
"Another one-sided plan, driven hard by one party against the wishes of another, can never succeed because it will essentially maintain the status quo: partisan opposition and no real solutions," he wrote.
President Donald Trump's ambitious agenda appeared to take a severe hit Monday night when the Senate healthcare bill hit a wall and threw into doubt Republican efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.
Trump was caught off guard by the move from Sens. Mike Lee and Jerry Moran to oppose the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA), which ultimately doomed it.
"I was very surprised when the two folks came out last night because we thought they were in fairly good shape but they did," Trump told reporters Tuesday.
Trump's response also vacillated wildly in the hours after the BCRA's collapse. First, he advocated for immediate repeal with no set replacement. Then, he suggested early Tuesday that Republicans should leave Obamacare in place and come back around when it "fails."
Greg Valliere, chief strategist at Horizon Investments said the defeat of the bill would be devastating for Trump's legislative priorities.
"Last night's death of the health bill is an unmitigated disaster for Trump, who said last year that it would be easy to replace Obamacare with 'something terrific,'" Valliere wrote in a note to clients on Tuesday.
Trump's apparently shifting priorities aligned with a monthslong push from Trump that oftentimes seemed uncoordinated at best.
Trump frequently appeared disengaged in the talks, with reports suggesting senators were confused by the policy topics he brought up in meetings.
For instance, during a dinner with Republican senators Monday, Trump reportedly brought up selling insurance across state lines — one of the priorities for which he advocated in the campaign — and bringing down drug prices. Neither of these issues could be dealt with in the bill due to Senate rules, however.
Additionally, some public-relations missteps cost the White House dearly in its attempts to sell the healthcare overhaul. Perhaps most glaringly, Trump called the House version of its healthcare bill "mean" just a few weeks after its passage, frustrating Republican lawmakers who voted for a bill that had been shown to be unpopular.
Analysts said, though, that perhaps Trump's biggest mistake was attempting to do healthcare first at all. Valliere said addressing such a delicate matter out of the gate instead of an issue where he could find more bipartisan support was a misstep.
"It's an understatement that Donald Trump badly miscalculated on his legislative agenda; moving first on Obamacare repeal and replacement was a disastrous — and hubristic — decision." the analyst wrote.
Some Republican members have also lamented the choice to move straight to healthcare at the beginning of the term. Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, who opposed the BCRA, expressed her disappointment in overall strategy after an initial false start on the bill.
"This president is the first president in our history who has had neither political nor military experience," Collins said. "Thus, it has been a challenge to him to learn how to interact with Congress and how to push his agenda forward. I also believe it would have been better had the president started with infrastructure, which has bipartisan support, rather than tackling a political divisive and technically complicated issue like healthcare."
A good thing for tax reform?
The healthcare debacle could loom large for the rest of the president's legislative agenda, as the cracks in the GOP conference that emerged during the healthcare debate could again emerge in fights over the budget, the need to raise the debt ceiling, and a push for tax reform.
To wit, reports Tuesday suggested the Treasury Department was preparing drastic measures in case the debt ceiling is not raised. The department called bond traders on Tuesday to reassure them that was not the case.
The degree to which Trump will be able to influence these debates after the healthcare debacle remains to be seen.
"The bottom line is there are members here who understood the president’s preference and were willing to vote against it anyway," Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida said Tuesday.
But some analysts said the healthcare failure could be a good thing for Trump and the GOP's push to cut taxes.
Given the time and resources swallowed up by healthcare (not to mention pushback on the Russia investigation), the Republican party is desperate for a win, so pressuring holdouts on tax reform could come easier.
Issac Boltansky, an analyst at Compass Point, said in a note to clients to Tuesday that the near-term embarrassment of the healthcare failure will give way to a renewed push for tax reform.
"The collapse of the Senate’s healthcare strategy is a near-term negative for the GOP’s broader legislative agenda, but we contend that failing to pass health care legislation dramatically increases the sense of urgency surrounding the tax reform conversation," Boltansky wrote. "Our sense is that the political embarrassment of health care failing will serve as a driver for the GOP to redouble its efforts to enact tax relief in this Congress."
That strategy seemed to be confirmed by McConnell, who told reporters at a Tuesday press conference that the GOP would move forward after healthcare.
"We'll be moving on to comprehensive tax reform and infrastructure," McConnell said. "There's much work to be done for the American people, and we're ready to tackle it."
Following the implosion of the Senate’s most recent attempt to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell indicated on Tuesday that his next step would be to take up a version of legislation passed by Congress in 2015 that would effectively repeal the ACA but delay the effective date of the legislation for two years.
The original version was vetoed by then-president Barack Obama.
Speaking on the Senate floor Tuesday morning, McConnell said, “In the coming days, the Senate will take up and vote on a repeal of Obamacare combined with a stable, two-year transition period as we work toward patient-centered health care. A majority of the Senate voted to pass the same repeal legislation in 2015. President Obama vetoed it then. President Trump will sign it now.”
He added, “Passing this legislation will provide the opportunity for Senators of all parties to engage, with a fresh start, with a new beginning for the American people.”
The 2015 bill that McConnell is planning to resurrect would have eliminated most of the ACA, including individual and employer mandates and subsidy payments, while leaving in place many of the consumer protections that the law put in place. Those elements of the law -- subsidies, mandates and consumer protections -- were meant to work together by offsetting insurers increased costs with a wave of new customers.
In theory, the two-year delay is meant to give Republican lawmakers time to craft an Obamacare replacement plan -- something they have been utterly unable to do in the seven years since they began promising to do away with the ACA. But, given the current Congress’s track record, experts believe that insurance companies won’t be content to wait two years before reacting to the law’s repeal.
“Insurers have shown that one of their key concerns is uncertainty,” said Edwin Park, vice president for health policy at the left-leaning Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. “This would be uncertainty taken to an exponential level.”
He said that he would expect insurers to immediately begin raising premiums, if not leaving the ACA’s individual market insurance exchanges entirely, “pending complete collapse of the individual market.”
A Congressional Budget Office review of a similar scenario largely confirmed Park’s assessment. The agency predicted tens of millions of Americans would lose insurance coverage, leaving fewer Americans insured than before the ACA was passed, with premium costs doubling for those still able to find policies.
But it’s unclear that things will ever get that far, because McConnell may just be setting himself up for another embarrassing legislative failure.
After he promised that there would be a vote on what is being called a “repeal-and-delay” plan, members of his own party began backing away from his plan. As of Tuesday afternoon, at least five GOP senators had expressed concerns about passing a repeal bill with no replacement ready.
Arizona Sen. John McCain, recovering from surgery, called on McConnell and Senate leaders to begin working with Democrats on a bipartisan basis. Sen. Bill Cassidy of Louisiana warned that a repeal and delay bill would probably increase insurance premiums.
Most importantly, three senators expressed outright opposition to the plan. Those three -- Maine’s Susan Collins, West Virginia’s Shelley Moore Capito and Alaska’s Lisa Murkowski -- by themselves represent enough votes to block McConnell’s measure from coming to the floor for debate.
It remained unclear on Tuesday whether McConnell would be willing to subject himself to the embarrassment of losing another battle on health care reform so soon.
President Donald Trump took to Twitter on Wednesday to say the crumbling Republican healthcare bill would improve by lunchtime and to attack Democrats for their defense of the Affordable Care Act.
"I will be having lunch at the White House today with Republican Senators concerning healthcare. They MUST keep their promise to America!" Trump tweeted.
In an attempt to revive the seemingly dead Senate healthcare bill, the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA), Trump invited the entire Senate Republican conference to the White House for a luncheon.
The BCRA collapsed Monday as moderates and conservatives said they would oppose the bill, leaving it without enough support to pass. A pivot to a repeal-only strategy, as opposed to the BCRA's simultaneous repeal and replacement of Obamacare, also fell apart Tuesday after three GOP senators came out against the idea.
This is the second time that Trump has brought all GOP senators to the White House, and the first time as after the BCRA was originally stalled in late June.
Despite this, Trump said in a subsequent tweet that the lunch will be a fruitful one and took a shot at Democrats.
"The Republicans never discuss how good their healthcare bill is, & it will get even better at lunchtime," the president tweeted. "The Dems scream death as OCare dies!"
On Tuesday, Trump said his plan after the Republican failure was to "let Obamacare fail" and then force Democrats to the negotiating table.
According to a report from the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonpartisan health policy think tank, the Obamacare individual insurance exchanges are actually close to profitable for most participating insurance companies and are likely to stabilize unless Trump sabotages them.
Democrats have said the biggest threat to the future of the Obamacare markets is Trump himself, since he can stop critical cost-sharing reduction payments or direct the IRS to stop enforcing the individual mandate. Either move would be crippling to the marketplaces, experts say.
President Donald Trump reportedly singled out Republican Sen. Rand Paul during a dinner with GOP senators on Monday night, criticizing the libertarian-leaning lawmaker for his opposition to the Senate's healthcare bill.
After the bill was sunk by opposition from both the conservative and moderate wings of the Republican Party, Trump complained that Paul had gone out of his way to publicize his discontent with the bill, and he derided the senator's TV appearances as unnecessary grandstanding, according to a New York Times report. Paul was not at the dinner.
Trump said that while it was one thing to vote against the bill, it was another to "go on all of the Sunday shows and complain about it," according to The Times.
Paul responded on "Good Morning America" on Wednesday, defending his relationship with the president and holding firm on his rejection of the bill, which would have repealed and replaced the Affordable Care Act, the law better known as Obamacare.
"I think the president and I have a good relationship — I've been one of his strongest defenders. I will continue to defend him against mainstream-media attacks," Paul said. "But on issues of substance like healthcare, he knows where I'm coming from. ... I was at the first tea parties saying that Obamacare was a mistake and we should repeal it."
The bill fell apart Monday night when two GOP senators — Jerry Moran of Kansas and Mike Lee of Utah — joined Paul and Sen. Susan Collins of Maine in rejecting it, tipping the scales against its passage.
Paul has long supported a full repeal of the ACA and advocates repealing the law before negotiating legislation to replace it. Paul implied he had helped persuade the president to change his mind on the issue after Trump tweeted on Monday that the Senate should repeal now and replace later.
Paul tweeted on Monday that he and Trump had discussed a "clean repeal now!"
Paul emphasized during his Wednesday interview that he and the president agree that Republicans should abandon Obamacare.
"I agree with the president, Obamacare's a disaster, but it's the Democrats' creation, and all the problems of its unraveling belong to Democrats," Paul said, arguing that any Republican bill that wouldn't fully repeal Obamacare would leave the GOP with the blame for the healthcare law's failure.
This isn't the first time Paul has won Trump's ire for his position on healthcare. In March, in the midst of the House's negotiation of their replacement bill, the president called Paul out by name on Twitter after the senator criticized the House proposal as "Obamacare-lite."
"I feel sure that my friend @RandPaul will come along with the new and great health care program because he knows Obamacare is a disaster!"Trump tweeted.
In response to reporters' questions about his reaction to the president's pressure, Paul said he felt "emboldened" by the criticism.
“I don't feel isolated by this. I actually feel emboldened,” Paul told Politico, arguing that the tweet signaled that the White House was open to negotiation with proponents of a clean Obamacare repeal.
Paul and Trump began their relationship on rocky footing during the 2016 presidential primaries. After the first Republican debate in August 2015, Trump called Paul "truly weird" and criticized his performance.
"Truly weird Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky reminds me of a spoiled brat without a properly functioning brain," Trump tweeted. "He was terrible at DEBATE!"
Paul struck back at Trump, calling him a "fake conservative."
Watch Paul's interview here:
As President Donald Trump moved Wednesday to try to revive the flailing Senate healthcare bill, reports suggested the White House's involvement so far has been rife with convolution, from a lack of a grasp on key policy issues to political missteps.
The push from Trump and Vice President Mike Pence to help pass the healthcare bill, the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA), was littered with pitfalls. In sum, it paints the picture of a legislative push that did little to assist, and may have even hurt, the Senate GOP attempts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.
Multiple reports have suggested that Trump mostly spent the run-up to the healthcare bill's failure on the sidelines.
Trump traveled last week to Paris, France, for a diplomatic visit with French President Emmanuel Macron. Then, last weekend, he spent multiple days attending a tournament at a Trump golf course in New Jersey as the legislation floundered. And when the president did engage, however, it did little to help the effort.
Trump apparently showed little grasp of policy details of the legislation. At a dinner Monday night, Politico reported, Trump asked GOP senators about selling insurance across state lines and drug prices, neither of which were features of the bill.
Separately, in a dinner with the entire Republican conference after the first version of the BCRA stalled, Trump questioned why the BCRA could be seen as a tax cut for wealthy Americans — despite the fact that a significant majority of the bill's tax benefits would go to the top 1% of incomes.
All along, Republican senators were not swayed by any of Trump's overtures.
"I wouldn't put it on him. The bottom line is there are members here who understood the president’s preference and were willing to vote against it anyways," Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida said.
For Pence, perhaps the most damaging was his attempt to win over governors' support during a conference on Saturday.
According to the Washington Post's Robert Costa, Kelsey Snell, and Sean Sullivan, Pence attempted to attack Gov. John Kasich of Ohio for his opposition to the BCRA. Kasich, a moderate Republican whose state expanded Medicaid under Obamacare, was reportedly "furious" about being called out by Pence. Pence was also unable to sway other key Republican governors during the meeting.
According to the report, though Pence attended numerous Senate GOP planning meetings and luncheons, his hardline conservative reputation did little to win over the moderate holdouts on the bill.
While the back-door deals seemed to do little to help the BCRA, the public-facing image wasn't much better.
First, as the Senate leadership worked on its own legislation, Trump called the House's version of the healthcare bill "mean" during a meeting with Republican senators. The move disgruntled House Republican members who had fought for the bill and celebrated its passage at the White House. And it made senators wary of the same fate.
Trump also attacked holdouts on the Senate bill. For instance, The New York Times reported that Trump fumed about conservative Sen. Rand Paul going on TV to talk about his opposition to the bill.
And earlier in the process, a pro-Trump group ran ads lambasting BCRA opponent Dean Heller of Nevada.
Heller is seen as perhaps most vulnerable Republican senator up for reelection in 2018 — in a state Hillary Clinton won in 2016 with a popular Republican governor who has been a defender of Obamacare's Medicaid expansion, which the BCRA would have slashed.
Despite the group distance from the White House, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell was reportedly irate about the ads and complained to White House chief of staff Reince Priebus. After Heller complained about the ads at the first all-Republican dinner with Trump, they stopped shortly after.
Nevertheless, on Wednesday morning, Trump promised to deliver a better version of the BCRA at another luncheon with all the Republican senators, and he crowed about what he called a collapse of Obamacare.
"The Republicans never discuss how good their healthcare bill is, & it will get even better at lunchtime," the president tweeted. "The Dems scream death as OCare dies!"
Conservative pundit Charles Krauthammer slammed President Donald Trump and Senate Republicans' unsuccessful attempt to repeal and replace Obamacare, calling it the "end of the road" for the GOP's healthcare efforts.
"This is an epic fail. This is historic," Krauthammer said during a Wednesday interview on Fox News. "This is seven years of arguing gone down the drain and I think they're at the end of the road on Obamacare, at least in this phase."
Krauthammer, an outspoken right-wing opinion columnist, shot down the suggestion that Republicans might be able to pass a clean repeal of former President Barack Obama's signature legislation — something Trump advocated for on Monday after it became clear the bill did not have the necessary support from Senate Republicans. Krauthammer called the president's last-minute proposal a "bluff."
"The idea that they're going to get a repeal bill standing alone when repeal and replace was meant to mitigate the effects of repeal is ridiculous," he continued. "It is not gonna pass, they know it's not gonna pass — it's a bluff."
Krauthammer argued that there are three reasons why the repeal and replace effort failed. First, he said it's almost impossible to "abandon" a government "entitlement" once it's been created or expanded. Second, Krauthammer claimed Trump showed "no presidential leadership" on the issue, unlike in 2009 and 2010 when Obama campaigned heavily for his healthcare bill, and the party failed to make a compelling case for their proposal.
"Did anybody make the case for what was in this bill in the Senate, other than that it was a promise?" he asked.
Lastly, Krauthammer blamed the failure on the "almost unbridgeable" divides between the moderate and conservative wings of the Republican caucus, both in the House and Senate.
The GOP bill fell apart Monday night when two more GOP senators — Jerry Moran of Kansas and Mike Lee of Utah — announced their opposition to the bill.
President Donald Trump on Wednesday said Republicans in the Senate should not recess until they have passed healthcare legislation that stalled again earlier this week, urging them to move a bill that would repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.
"Frankly I don't think we should leave town until this is complete, until this bill is on my desk," Trump said at a White House lunch that featured almost all of the GOP conference.
Trump's comments represented Trump's third shift in position on the healthcare legislation in recent days. On Monday, after two GOP senators said they would vote against a key procedural vote to bring the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA) to the floor, effectively killing the bill, Trump said that Republicans should immediately repeal Obamacare.
On Tuesday, Trump tweeted and told reporters he wanted to keep Obamacare in place but let it fail. This, the president said, would bring Democrats to the table on a possible fix.
But on Wednesday, Trump appeared to try to revive the BCRA despite widespread discontent with the bill among GOP members.
Trump also joked with one Republican senator about his opposition to the bill. Sitting next to Sen. Dean Heller of Nevada, Trump made a quip questioning whether Heller wanted to remain a senator. Heller came out against the BCRA early on and is up for reelection in 2018 in Nevada, a state where a majority voted for Hillary Clinton.
"He wants to remain senator, doesn't he?"Trump said.
This isn't the first time Trump and Heller have had a run in. A pro-Trump group ran ads against Heller after he came out against the initial version of the BCRA, prompting Heller to joke about the ads during a luncheon after the BCRA's first false start in June.
In addition to going after Heller, Trump said he was "surprised" that Sens. Jerry Moran and Mike Lee came out against the bill on Monday, effectively killing it.
"The other night I was very surprised when I heard a couple of my friends, my friends they really were, and are — they might not be for much longer but that's OK," Trump said, before moving onto Heller.
Trump also attacked Democratic Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.
"You see Chuck Schumer up there and before he's even seen the plan, before most of you had even seen the plan, he's talking about people dying. He's saying 'Death, death death!'," Trump said.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has already delayed the typically month-long recess from Washington by two weeks. He has said he plans to bring a straight-repeal bill to the floor early next week.
President Donald Trump on Wednesday singled out one of the most vulnerable Senate Republicans for his opposition to the GOP healthcare bill.
Speaking at a White House lunch with nearly every GOP senator in attendance, Trump questioned whether Sen. Dean Heller of Nevada even wanted to be in Congress anymore.
"This was the one we were worried about," Trump said, motioning to Heller, who was seated next to him. "You weren't there, but you're going to be."
After a pause for laughter, Trump continued: "Look, he wants to remain a senator doesn't he?"
Heller expressed concerns immediately after the release of the bill, the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA), over proposed cuts to the Affordable Care Act's Medicaid expansion. He went on to oppose the legislation.
"There isn't anything in this bill that would lower premiums,"Heller said at a press conference the day after the bill was released.
Nevada's popular Republican Gov. Brian Sandoval has also been steadfastly against the BCRA.
Heller was the target of a pro-Trump group's ads in Nevada for his position against the bill. The ads were only pulled after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell complained to the White House. Heller joked them off at the last all-member luncheon with Trump.
The ads were seen as a blunder amid a generally ineffective campaign from the White House.