Overnight Healthcare: Trump plays hardball on ObamaCare | Senators revive negotiations | CBO says repeal without replace would cost 32M insurance

Overnight Healthcare: Trump plays hardball on ObamaCare | Senators revive negotiations | CBO says repeal without replace would cost 32M insurance
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Senate GOP revives negotiation over ObamaCare repeal and replace

Senate Republicans will huddle on Wednesday evening to look for a way forward on GOP healthcare legislation.

"I think yeah, I would say that it is contemporarily sort of revived," Sen. John ThuneJohn Randolph ThuneHillicon Valley: GOP senator wants one agency to run tech probes | Huawei expects to lose B in sales from US ban | Self-driving car bill faces tough road ahead | Elon Musk tweets that he 'deleted' his Twitter account Hillicon Valley: GOP senator wants one agency to run tech probes | Huawei expects to lose B in sales from US ban | Self-driving car bill faces tough road ahead | Elon Musk tweets that he 'deleted' his Twitter account New push to regulate self-driving cars faces tough road MORE (R-S.D.) said of the Republican effort to repeal and replace ObamaCare.

Thune and Sen. Roy BluntRoy Dean BluntDemocrats detail new strategy to pressure McConnell on election security bills Democrats detail new strategy to pressure McConnell on election security bills Senate Democrats to try to force additional election security votes MORE (R-Mo.), both members of Senate leadership, expressed optimism about injecting new life into the process following a closed-door lunch with President Trump earlier in the day. It is not clear what approach Senate Republicans will take in the negotiation.

Read more here.

 

More on the meeting at the White House... Trump plays hardball

President Trump on Wednesday admonished Republican senators over their stalled healthcare push and demanded they resume work on a bill to repeal and replace ObamaCare, setting up a last-ditch attempt to avoid an embarrassing defeat.

Trump invited Republican senators to the White House for lunch a day after their healthcare legislation appeared dead, telling lawmakers they should not leave Washington before reaching a solution, even if it means scrapping their already-delayed August recess.

"Frankly, I don't think we should leave town unless we have a health insurance plan," the president said at the start of the lunch in the State Dining Room. "Because we're close; we're very close."

Read more here.

 

McConnell says he'll try again

The president's public tongue-lashing appeared to produce results.

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellOvernight Defense: Shanahan exit shocks Washington | Pentagon left rudderless | Lawmakers want answers on Mideast troop deployment | Senate could vote on Saudi arms deal this week | Pompeo says Trump doesn't want war with Iran Senators reach .5B deal on Trump's emergency border request Senators reach .5B deal on Trump's emergency border request MORE (R-Ky.) said after the meeting that he would be reviving ObamaCare repeal and replace negotiations.

"Next week we'll be voting on the motion to proceed, and I have every expectation that we'll be able to get on the bill," McConnell told reporters after the lunch with Trump.

It was not immediately clear which bill McConnell wanted to move to -- a straight repeal of ObamaCare or the Senate's ObamaCare repeal-and-replace legislation, which had seemed dead days ago.

But as the afternoon waned on, it seemed increasingly clear that McConnell's hope is to get back to a new and improved Senate bill.

Read more here.

 

Inside the lunch... Trump squeezes 'no' vote Heller

President Trump sat next to Sen. Dean HellerDean Arthur HellerThis week: Barr back in hot seat over Mueller report Trump suggests Heller lost reelection bid because he was 'hostile' during 2016 presidential campaign Trump picks ex-oil lobbyist David Bernhardt for Interior secretary MORE (R-Nev.), an opponent of the Senate GOP's bill to repeal and replace ObamaCare, at the White House lunch designed to salvage the effort.

Trump used the seating arrangement to pressure Heller, joking about him wanting to "remain a senator."

"Any senator who votes against debate says you are fine with ObamaCare," Trump said.

Heller, considered one of the GOP's most endangered 2018 incumbents, has a fraught relationship with the White House over his stance on healthcare.

Read more here.

 

Trump also encouraged senators to cancel their recess to finish up their healthcare work.

Read more about those remarks here.

 

CBO: ObamaCare repeal without replace would cost 32 million their insurance

Repealing ObamaCare without a replacement would result in 32 million people losing their insurance in the next 10 years, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

The bill would also massively increase insurance premiums. According to CBO, average premiums would increase by about 25 percent in 2018 alone. The increase would reach about 50 percent in 2020, and premiums would about double by 2026, the CBO said.

Senate Republicans said they would consider voting on repeal only when it appeared their replacement legislation had failed. However, negotiations attempting to revive repeal and replace are continuing.

Read more here.

 

ObamaCare payments to continue

Key ObamaCare subsidies to insurers will be paid this month, the White House confirmed to The Hill on Wednesday, one day before the deadline to make July's cost-sharing reduction (CSR) payments.

The administration has not made a commitment beyond this month.

The payments help low-income people afford the co-pays, deductibles and other out-of-pocket costs associated with health insurance policies. Insurers have called the payments critical, saying that without them, they would have to massively increase premiums or exit the individual market.

With Senate Republicans scrambling to find a path forward after their ObamaCare repeal-and-replace effort appeared to collapse this week, ending the CSR payments would be a major power play from the administration.

Read more here.  

 

White House working with moderates on new Medicaid proposal

Seema Verma, the administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, told moderate GOP senators at a White House meeting Wednesday that the administration is willing to hammer out a new Medicaid proposal.

The latest proposal, which senators are calling a "Medicaid wrap-around," would give states more flexibility to use Medicaid funding to cover the healthcare expenses of people outside the program who face high healthcare costs.

"She explained very briefly -- very, very briefly -- some of the parameters of what they're calling this wrap-around for Medicaid," said Sen. Lisa Murkowksi (R-Alaska), one of the moderate holdouts who has threatened to vote against a motion to proceed to the GOP's healthcare bill.

Read more here.

 

Freedom Caucus to try to force ObamaCare repeal vote

Members of the House Freedom Caucus will try to force a vote on legislation repealing ObamaCare, which the GOP-controlled Congress previously passed under President Obama.

Freedom Caucus members have been pushing for a straight repeal of the healthcare law since efforts to repeal-and-replace came to a halt in the Senate this week.

Rep. Tom Garrett (R-Va.) filed a special rule on Wednesday to start the process of triggering a vote, a GOP aide said. The measure will have to wait at the House Rules Committee for at least a week, meaning any vote wouldn't be until after the August break.

Read more here.

 

What we're reading

Mulvaney to insurers on Trump plans if health bill fails: 'You probably won't like it that much' (IJR)

Uncertainty over ObamaCare leaves next year's rates in limbo (NPR)

The myth of drug expiration dates (Propublica)

 

State by state

Pennsylvania mothers whose children rely on Medicaid keep up the pressure (Philly.com)

Advocates warn Iowa Medicaid privatization could cause a dentist shortage (Des Moines Register)

Missouri becomes last state to create drug-monitoring plan (Associated Press)

 

In case you missed it from The Hill

Trump: Republicans 'never discuss how good their healthcare bill is'

Club for Growth ramps up pressure ahead of ObamaCare vote

Governors-turned-senators meet to talk healthcare

Gore calls for single-payer healthcare

Poll: Support for ObamaCare repeal-only plan at 13 percent

Conservatives target Congress not Trump after healthcare collapse