By Elise Viebeck - 06/12/14 10:51 AM EDT
The Senate Appropriations Committee delayed a vote on a health spending bill after Republicans reportedly indicated they would force several uncomfortable votes on ObamaCare.
The move by panel chairwoman Barbara MikulskiBarbara MikulskiAcela primaries: Winners, losers Failed Md. gubernatorial candidate wins primary for Donna Edwards seat Candidate who spent M loses Md. House race MORE (D-Md.) sets up a conflict with colleague Tom HarkinTom HarkinDo candidates care about our health or just how much it costs? The Hill's 12:30 Report Mark Mellman: Parsing the primary processes MORE (D-Iowa), who leads the subcommittee responsible for funding the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and wants to see his bill advance.
Republicans are reportedly planning to force several politically painful votes related to the healthcare law when the spending bill comes up for approval.
Endangered Democrats like Sens. Mark PryorMark PryorEx-Sen. Kay Hagan joins lobby firm Top Democrats are no advocates for DC statehood Ex-Sen. Landrieu joins law and lobby firm MORE (Ark.) and Mary LandrieuMary Landrieu oil is changing the world and Washington Ex-Sen. Kay Hagan joins lobby firm Republican announces bid for Vitter’s seat MORE (La.) are members of the committee, and leaders are interested in protecting them from votes that could heighten ObamaCare as an issue in their campaigns.
The delay was first reported Thursday by The Associated Press.
Harkin had previously said that his measure would see a vote on Thursday, but Mikulski never scheduled it. An email from her staff said the timetable was "under review."
“Senator Harkin worked hard on a bill that meets critical needs with funding for Head Start, NIH, and to ensure the maximum Pell Grant award. He remains hopeful that we can still get on the bill this year," said Harkin spokeswoman Kate Frischmann in a statement.
Updated at 12 p.m.