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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 GrahamOvernight Defense: Biden sends message with Syria airstrike | US intel points to Saudi crown prince in Khashoggi killing | Pentagon launches civilian-led sexual assault commission Graham: Trump will 'be helpful' to all Senate GOP incumbents John Boehner tells Cruz to 'go f--- yourself' in unscripted audiobook asides: report MORE (S.C.) and Bill CassidyBill CassidyRepublicans see Becerra as next target in confirmation wars Overnight Health Care: Johnson & Johnson vaccine safe, effective in FDA analysis | 3-4 million doses coming next week | White House to send out 25 million masks Koch-backed group launches ads urging lawmakers to reject COVID-19 relief bill 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 McCainCindy McCain planning 'intimate memoir' of life with John McCain Trump-McConnell rift divides GOP donors Arkansas state senator says he's leaving Republican Party 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 PaulOvernight Health Care: 50 million coronavirus vaccines given | Pfizer news | Biden health nominees Rand Paul criticized for questioning of transgender health nominee Haley isolated after Trump fallout MORE (R-Ky.) opposes the Graham-Cassidy bill, and Sens. Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiGraham: Trump will 'be helpful' to all Senate GOP incumbents The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by The AIDS Institute - Senate ref axes minimum wage, House votes today on relief bill Republicans see Becerra as next target in confirmation wars MORE (Alaska) and Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsMedia circles wagons for conspiracy theorist Neera Tanden Why the 'Never-Trumpers' flopped Republicans see Becerra as next target in confirmation wars MORE (Maine) have also not offered their support. Both voted against an earlier Senate ObamaCare repeal bill.