Fifth GOP Senator says he won't back AHCA


"It's simply not the answer", the Nevada Republican said at a news conference alongside Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval in Las Vegas.

The draft bill comes nearly two months after the House passed its own measure.

The bill also repeals the tax mechanism that funded the Affordable Care Act's benefits, resulting in hundreds of billions of dollars in tax cuts for the wealthy and health care industry.

Republicans held 52 seats in the 100-member chamber, which means it can not afford losing more than three of its votes.

Democrats were hoping to scare off as many Republican votes as possible by planning efforts around the country to criticize the measure.

As he has multiple times since the ACA's passage in 2010, Obama conceded that the bill was less than ideal and vowed to support any Republican-backed bill that "is demonstrably better than the improvements we made to our health care system, that covers as many people at less cost". The estimate was released Friday by Arizona's Medicaid agency, which analyzed the effects of the legislation on the state health insurance program for low-income people.

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While neither of Louisiana's Republican U.S. senators has committed to back the Senate GOP health plan, advocacy groups seeking to keep the current federal law intact have their focus squarely on only one of them: physician Bill Cassidy. He said that the new plan will give Americans less comprehensive health care coverage and estimates that the bill will increase deductibles, defund Planned Parenthood, impose a "crushing age tax" on middle age Americans, and rollback safeguards to prevent lifetime insurance limits. The bill's biggest obstacle could be opposition from within the Republican party.

"I regret that our Democratic friends made clear early on that they did not want to work with us in a serious, bipartisan way to address the Obamacare status quo".

Heller is up for reelection in 2018 in a state won by Hillary Clinton in last year's presidential election.

Maybe they're waiting for the Congressional Budget Office to crunch the numbers. Senators Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, Mike Lee, and Ron Johnson are the other four senators opposed to the bill, but their contention is that it doesn't go far enough to repeal Obamacare. "Well, they're also four good guys, four friends of mine, and I think that they'll probably get there", he said.

The Senate bill would reduce federal funding for the Medicaid expansion starting in 2021. Now, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is planning a vote next week.