Finance to hold hearing on ObamaCare repeal bill

Finance to hold hearing on ObamaCare repeal bill
© Victoria Sarno Jordan

The Senate Finance Committee will hold a hearing Monday on the latest effort to repeal ObamaCare as Republicans eye a potential vote next week. 

“A hearing will allow members on both sides of the aisle to delve deeper into its policy and gain a better understanding of what the authors hope to achieve,” Finance Chairman Orrin HatchOrrin Grant HatchMeet Washington's most ineffective senator: Joe Manchin Lobbying world Congress, stop holding 'Dreamers' hostage MORE (R-Utah) said in a statement.

He noted that senators “have expressed a strong desire” to hold a public hearing on the bill. 

ADVERTISEMENT

The legislation from GOP Sens. Bill CassidyBill Cassidy​​Democrats make voting rights push ahead of Senate consideration Sunday shows - Voting rights legislation dominates GOP senator knocks Biden for 'spreading things that are untrue' in voting rights speech MORE (La.) and Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamKyrsten Sinema's courage, Washington hypocrisy and the politics of rage Hillicon Valley: Amazon's Alabama union fight — take two McConnell will run for another term as leader despite Trump's attacks MORE (R-S.C.) is gaining momentum in the Senate ahead of an end-of-month deadline for Republicans to try to nix the Affordable Care Act with a simple majority. 

After September 30, Republicans would have to get through a Democratic filibuster in the Senate, which is an almost certain insurmountable obstacle.

Sen. Ron WydenRonald (Ron) Lee WydenSanders, 50 Democrats unveil bill to send N95 masks to all Americans Manchin told White House he would back version of billionaire tax: report Democrats look to scale back Biden bill to get it passed MORE (D-Ore.), the panel’s ranking member, said on the Senate floor that he was not consulted about the hearing.

“Contrary to the norms of the Senate Finance Committee, I was not consulted in this matter as the ranking Democrat,” he said. 

The Graham-Cassidy bill would repeal much of ObamaCare, ending funding for Medicaid’s expansion and the healthcare law’s subsidies that help people buy insurance. In their place, block grants would be given to states.

The bill does not appear to have the 50 votes needed for passage, though its supporters say it is garnering support. If it can get to 50, Vice President Pence could break a tie vote.

The Finance Committee is the second Senate panel to announce they will have a hearing related to the new GOP ObamaCare repeal bill. 

The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee will hold a hearing next week on using block grants to try to reduce healthcare costs. 

GOP leadership came under criticism, including from some members of their own caucus, for not holding a public hearing on their initial ObamaCare repeal and replace effort that failed in July.