Hatch: Passing Graham-Cassidy 'nearly impossible'

Sen. Orrin HatchOrrin Grant HatchDem rep who met with Kavanaugh accuser: 'She wanted her truth to come out' Senate passes bipartisan bill to curb opioid crisis Kavanaugh, accuser to testify publicly on Monday MORE (R-Utah) on Monday expressed doubt about the passage of the GOP’s latest plan to replace ObamaCare, saying the chances of pushing the Graham-Cassidy bill through the upper chamber are slim.

“It's nearly impossible. I’m not saying anything is impossible because we could always maybe work it out in the end but so far I haven’t seen” anything indicating this time will be different, Hatch told reporters, according to Bloomberg News.

Hatch's remarks came the same day as a planned hearing on the new health-care measure put forth by Sens. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamCriticizing Trump’s ‘unsung success’ in Puerto Rico is valid — empty rhetoric is not Biden: Delay Kavanaugh vote to give accuser a fair, respectful hearing Ken Starr says 'I trust Brett Kavanaugh' over allegations that are 'so wildly out of character' MORE (R-S.C.) and Bill CassidyWilliam (Bill) Morgan CassidyOutdated global postal system hurts US manufacturers GOP eyes another shot at ObamaCare repeal after McCain’s death Overnight Defense: Push to rename Senate building for McCain sparks GOP backlash | Pentagon has no plans to suspend future Korea war games | Mattis rejects plan to privatize Afghan War MORE (R-La.). The bill aims to repeal much of ObamaCare and provide block grants to states to use for health-care funding.

In his opening statement at the hearing, Hatch addressed the challenges posed by the legislation, as well as the differing viewpoints surrounding the issue of health care. "But, while I wish that expressions of goodwill could, on their own, fix our nation's problems, that is just not the case. We have to do the work. And, on these issues, the work is particularly hard," he said.

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The bill's success hinges on a select few since the party can only afford to lose two Republican votes in order to get the necessary 50 votes necessary to pass it. Sens. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainAnother recession could hit US in 2019, says credit union association chief R-E-S-P-E-C-T: One legacy of Franklin and McCain is up to us To cure Congress, elect more former military members MORE (R-Ariz.) and Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulSome employees' personal data revealed in State Department email breach: report The Hill's 12:30 Report — Trump says Dems inflated Puerto Rico death toll | House cancels Friday votes | Florence starts to hit coast The Hill's Morning Report — Sponsored by Better Medicare Alliance — Facing major hurricane, Trump is tested MORE (R-Ky.) have already stated their opposition to the plan, while Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsMurkowski echoes calls for Kavanaugh, accuser to testify Kavanaugh, accuser to testify publicly on Monday White House says Kavanaugh ready to testify over 'false allegation' MORE (R-Maine) appears to largely be against the measure.

McCain also opposed a previous slimmed-down ObamaCare repeal bill in July, famously giving a thumbs-down vote that proved decisive in killing its chances. 

Republicans are making one last push to pass health-care legislation by Sept. 30, after which a special rule that allows them to move a bill without Democrats will expire. After that, Democrats will be able to filibuster their health-care pushes.

Protesters have packed the hallways outside the Senate hearing and repeatedly interrupted the proceeding with some yelling chants like, "Kill the bill, don't kill me."

President Trump on Monday also appeared pessimistic about the passage of the bill, while blaming McCain for shooting down their chances at enacting a new health-care system.