Good thing. It’s not.
Senator Ron Johnson, a Republican out of Wisconsin, has a problem with the newly released Senate healthcare reform bill.
“I would not call this ObamaCare repeal. It’s definitely not repealing ObamaCare,” he said.
“I would say it’s trying to address and fix some of the mess, just some of the mess, created by ObamaCare. But that’s my concern. I’m not sure it’s fixing enough,” said Johnson, who will study the bill more closely before deciding on how he will vote.
Just some of the mess.
And that’s the problem. The majority of voters who gave the House, Senate, and presidency to Republicans wanted the loathsome Obamacare mess GONE.
Not “fixed,” nor merely tinkered with, but a clean repeal.
GOP leaders are pushing for their colleagues to jump on this bill, as if they were a starving man and this was the last pork chop on the plate.
Some, like Johnson, aren’t in the kind of hurry that would let them make a hasty vote.
“Let’s talk about input from our constituencies,” Johnson told reporters. “How does this affect, for example, their reimbursement with Children’s Hospital [of Wisconsin]? How’s this going to affect doctors?”
Johnson said one of his major concerns with the bill is that it will not do enough to lower premiums.
“I don’t think there’s enough, probably, in there to bring down those premiums, which I think is a problem with both the House and maybe the Senate bill now,” he said, expressing doubt that he will have a firm grasp by next week of how the legislation will affect rising premiums.
“I have a hard time believing I’ll have that information prior to when leadership may want to vote on this,” he added.
And that is a reasoned response. Give lawmakers time to read it, study it on its merits, get input from the people who will feel the impact of it most – the citizens.
Unfortunately, that’s not what GOP leadership wants to hear.
Paul Ryan is already crowing about the bill, even after saying he hasn’t read it.
Ryan said he had not yet read the Senate’s bill to repeal and replace ObamaCare but had been briefed by his staff.
“From what I understand, their bill tracks in many ways along the lines of the House bill. I think that’s very good,” Ryan told reporters at his weekly news conference. “I’m not going to opine on their process. They gave us the space to go through our deliberative process. The last thing I want to do is be disrespectful of their process.
“I think the bottom line is I want them to pass the bill so we can all get on with keeping our promise [to repeal ObamaCare].”
Yes. Keep your promise to repeal Obamacare.
As Senator Johnson and others have pointed out, this is not a repeal.
Senator Johnson joins a handful of his colleagues in being less than eager to support the Senate bill.
Senators Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, and Mike Lee have all expressed dissatisfaction with the bill, as well.