SPONSORED:

GOP changes Graham-Cassidy bill to win over wary senators

Senate Republicans on Sunday night circulated a revised draft of their bill to repeal and replace ObamaCare, aiming to win over key holdout senators. 

According to estimates of the state-by-state impacts obtained by The Hill along with the revised bill, Maine and Arizona would see boosts in funding. Alaska would see a small drop in federal funding. 

The analysis from the backers of the bill argues that after taking into account money the state would save on its Medicaid program, Alaska would gain relative to current law. But Democrats argue that is misleading and say what matters is that Alaska would see a cut in federal funding.
ADVERTISEMENT

Those states are home to three holdouts on the bill, Sens. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsPush to expand Supreme Court faces Democratic buzzsaw Collins PAC donated hundreds of dollars to two candidates who support QAnon Republicans increasingly seek distance from Trump MORE (R-Maine), John McCainJohn Sidney McCainTrump digs in on conspiracy theory over bin Laden raid At 97, Bob Dole is still fighting for his country Leadership matters: President's words and actions show he is unfit to lead our nation MORE (R-Ariz.) and Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiClimate change — Trump's golden opportunity The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by Facebook - Trump combative, Biden earnest during distanced TV duel Romney says he'll vote to put Barrett on Supreme Court MORE (R-Alaska). 

However, it is far from clear that the revisions would be enough to win their support. Collins has a long list of concerns, including an overhaul of the Medicaid program. McCain has denounced the process as rushed and lacking bipartisanship. 

The state-by-state analysis projects a 3 percent increase in funding for Alaska, a 43 percent increase for Maine and a 14 percent increase for Arizona. 

It is possible, though, that independent analyses of the impacts of the bill will be different than this analysis from backers of the bill.

Some experts point out that the numbers do not appear to take into account a separate cap on Medicaid spending in the bill, which would lead to further cuts to federal funding to states.  

The overall bill is largely the same as the earlier version. It still converts ObamaCare's subsidies and Medicaid expansion dollars into a block grant for states. 

It also allows states to waive ObamaCare protections against people with pre-existing conditions getting charged more, an area at the center of controversy around the bill. 

“Despite an attempt to appear to add money for a select few states, this bill is just as bad for those states and the rest of the states because it still contains a massive cut to Medicaid, and would throw our health insurance system into chaos while raising premiums," Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer (N.Y.) said in a statement. "It still takes away protections for those with preexisting conditions and further weakens consumer protections."

The measure is headed toward a possible vote this week ahead of a Sept. 30 deadline for using a special budgetary process that prevents a Democratic filibuster. However, it has extremely long odds. McCain and Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulMichigan Republican isolating after positive coronavirus test GOP Rep. Mike Bost tests positive for COVID-19 Top Democrats introduce resolution calling for mask mandate, testing program in Senate MORE (R-Ky.) are against it, and Collins has said it is hard for her to envision voting for it. 

Republicans can only lose two votes and still pass the bill with a tie-breaking vote from Vice President Pence.