Arizona governor backs new ObamaCare repeal bill

Arizona governor backs new ObamaCare repeal bill
© Greg Nash

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey has endorsed a new Senate Republican bill that would repeal and replace ObamaCare.

Ducey, a Republican, called the legislation offered by GOP Sens. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamKim, Moon toss ball to Trump in ‘last, best chance’ for Korean peace GOP senator: Kavanaugh accuser 'moving the goalposts' Collins: Kavanaugh accuser should 'reconsider,' testify on Monday MORE (S.C.) and Bill CassidyWilliam (Bill) Morgan CassidyOvernight Health Care: Opioids package nears finish line | Measure to help drug companies draws ire | Maryland ObamaCare rates to drop Overnight Health Care: HHS diverts funds to pay for detaining migrant children | Health officials defend transfers | Lawmakers consider easing drug company costs in opioids deal Overnight Health Care: Senators target surprise medical bills | Group looks to allow Medicaid funds for substance abuse programs | FDA launches anti-vaping campaign for teens MORE (La.) "the best path forward" to gut the health-care law.

He also said the Senate had "12 days" to get the job done, a reference to the fact that Republicans will lose the right to use special budgetary rules to avoid a Democratic filibuster at the end of the month. 

Ducey's remarks are important because Arizona Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainTrump hits McCain on ObamaCare vote GOP, White House start playing midterm blame game Arizona race becomes Senate GOP’s ‘firewall’ MORE (R) is a key vote in the Senate. 

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McCain cast the deciding vote against a previous ObamaCare repeal bill, but he has suggested he might support legislation backed by his state's governor.

On Monday, he told NBC that he is "comfortable with the bill as long as the governor of Arizona has signed off on it, which he has some concerns."

McCain also said, however, that he preferred a bipartisan process.

"I understand Sen. Graham and Sen. Cassidy and their desire to get this done," McCain said, "but I guarantee you, haven't we learned that bipartisanship — particularly when we're talking about one-fifth of our gross national product, health care — that it should be done on a bipartisan basis."

Later Monday, McCain explained that he was looking for "regular order."

“I am not supportive of the bill yet. We’ll talk more about it. I’ll talk with my governor and all that. I want regular order.”

Asked about Ducey's endorsement, McCain replied, “This decision that I’m making, obviously, as I’ve said, has a lot to do with the process. Am I going to have an amendment? Is there going to be a substitute? Or am I just going to vote it up or down just like they tried last time?”

Republicans are running out of time to get something done on ObamaCare repeal. 

They face a Sept. 30 deadline to use "budget reconciliation" rules that allow them to pass the measure without winning 60 votes for procedural motions. Without those rules, no ObamaCare repeal bill would get through the Senate.

Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulConservatives left frustrated as Congress passes big spending bills Senate approves 4B spending bill Some employees' personal data revealed in State Department email breach: report MORE (R-Ky.) opposes the Graham-Cassidy bill, and Sens. Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiMurkowski says she’ll wait until Ford testifies before making decision on Kavanaugh Alaska gov, lieutenant gov come out against Kavanaugh The Memo: Tide turns on Kavanaugh MORE (Alaska) and Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsGrassley panel scraps Kavanaugh hearing, warns committee will vote without deal Collins 'appalled' by Trump tweet about Kavanaugh accuser Poll: More voters oppose Kavanaugh’s nomination than support it MORE (Maine) have also not offered their support. Both voted against an earlier Senate ObamaCare repeal bill.