Dem senator: GOP using Russia, Scalise shooting as ‘cover’ for healthcare

Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) said Tuesday that Senate Republicans are using the investigation into Russian election meddling and last week’s shooting at a congressional baseball practice as “cover” to try to move their healthcare bill.

Murphy said news of the Russia controversy and the shooting that left House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) seriously wounded were crowding out coverage of the Senate’s healthcare debate and that the GOP was using this as an advantage.

“There’s been a lot of coverage of the Russia investigation, obviously focused last week on the devastating shooting here in Washington,” he said on CNN’s “New Day.”

{mosads}”Republicans have used all that news as cover to try to move a bill to the Senate floor that is deeply unpopular,” he said.

Murphy also criticized GOP lawmakers for a secretive process, saying they have “locked themselves in a room and shut out Democrats and all of our constituents.”

He said Democrats are trying to “shame” Republicans into opening up the healthcare process.

“And they are about to bring in a bill — that reorders one-fifth of the American economy, jacks up rates on everybody, takes insurance potentially from millions — to the Senate floor without more than maybe a day or two of viewing by the American public. So we are trying to shame Republicans to open up this process,” Murphy added, saying Democrats are also “trying to wake the American people up to what is about to happen.”

Senate Democrats, including Murphy, took to the Senate floor on Monday evening to protest the Republican’s efforts pass healthcare reform legislation without providing a public forum for the bill to be reviewed or negotiated.

“Why are my constituents not allowed to see the details of what is about to their lives? Why are only a select group of Americans able to have a voice inside that room?” Murphy said on the floor.

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