Sen. Murphy: Dems more focused on defeating Graham-Cassidy than passing single-payer

Sen. Murphy: Dems more focused on defeating Graham-Cassidy than passing single-payer
© Getty Images

Sen. Chris MurphyChristopher (Chris) Scott MurphySenate Dems rip Trump after Putin news conference Dems launch pressure campaign over migrant families Sunday shows preview: Trump readies for meeting with Putin MORE (D-Conn.) on Friday downplayed suggestions that the Democratic Party was pivoting to single-payer health care, arguing that the party is more focused now on defending the Affordable Care Act.

Murphy told MSNBC's "Morning Joe" that he expected Monday's CNN debate between Sens. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersElection Countdown: Senate, House Dems build cash advantage | 2020 Dems slam Trump over Putin presser | Trump has M in war chest | Republican blasts parents for donating to rival | Ocasio-Cortez, Sanders to campaign in Kansas House Dems launching Medicare for All Caucus Let's remove the legal shield from hackers who rob us of our civil rights MORE (I-Vt.), Amy KlobucharAmy Jean KlobucharHillicon Valley: EU hits Google with record B fine | Trump tries to clarify Russia remarks | Sinclair changing deal to win over FCC | Election security bill gets traction | Robocall firm exposed voter data Election security bill picks up new support in Senate Senate must approve Justice Served Act to achieve full potential of DNA evidence MORE (D-Minn.), Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamTrump’s damage control falters Trump: 'I think I did great at the news conference' George Will calls Trump ‘sad, embarrassing wreck of a man’ MORE (R-S.C.) and Bill CassidyWilliam (Bill) Morgan CassidyGOP senators introduce resolution endorsing ICE Lawmakers pitch dueling plans for paid family leave New push to break deadlock on paid family leave MORE (R-La.) to be focused on ObamaCare and whether or not to repeal it.

ADVERTISEMENT
“I actually don’t think that Bernie Sanders is going to be talking about single-payer health care Monday night,” Murphy said Friday. “I think he’s going to be talking about why Graham-Cassidy is such an immediate threat to the country.”

The four senators will meet for a debate on CNN on Monday evening, moderated by anchor Jake Tapper and chief political correspondent Dana Bash.

"With a critical deadline looming, Graham and Cassidy, architects of the Republicans latest healthcare proposal, will debate Sanders and Klobuchar on the merits of the plan that would repeal and replace Obamacare," CNN said in its announcement.

The Graham-Cassidy bill, which could get a vote next week in the Senate, is the GOP's last-ditch attempt to repeal and replace ObamaCare. Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulMcCain: Trump plays into 'Putin's hands' by attacking Montenegro, questioning NATO obligations The Nation editor: Reaction by most of the media to Trump-Putin press conference 'is like mob violence' Lewandowski: Trump-Putin meeting advances goal of world peace MORE (R-Ky.) has already come out against the legislation, affording Republicans just one more defection against a unified Democratic minority.

Sanders, who has introduced his own single-payer "Medicare for all" health-care bill, has gained the support of more than a dozen Democratic co-sponsors, including most of the likely 2020 presidential contenders. Klobuchar, however, has not endorsed his bill, though she is a vocal critic of Graham-Cassidy.

But Murphy told MSNBC on Friday that Sanders will likely pivot to a full-throated defense of ObamaCare during the debate Monday night, which will help Democrats rally to defeat the bill later in the week.

“I think we have got to be out there as a Democratic Party continuing to explain what this bill does, and that includes Bernie Sanders and Amy Klobuchar,” Murphy said. “I think our collective efforts, in the end, will be successful.”