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McCain Announces Opposition To Graham-Cassidy Healthcare Bill


Dealing a potentially fatal blow to a last-ditch effort by Republicans to repeal and replace Obamacare, Senator John McCain, R-Ariz., on Friday announced his opposition to a healthcare bill drafted by Senators Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., and Bill Cassidy, R-La.

"I cannot in good conscience vote for the Graham-Cassidy proposal," McCain said. "I believe we could do better working together, Republicans and Democrats, and have not yet really tried."

He added, "Nor could I support it without knowing how much it will cost, how it will effect insurance premiums, and how many people will be helped or hurt by it."

McCain noted that a Congressional Budget Office score will not be available before the Senate is set to vote on the bill next week.

The Arizona senator said he would consider supporting legislation similar to the Graham-Cassidy bill if it were the product of extensive hearings, debate and amendment.

The Graham-Cassidy bill would repeal the structure and architecture of Obamacare and replace it with block grants to states to help individuals pay for healthcare.

McCain joins Senator Rand Paul, R-Ken., as Republicans publicly announcing opposition to the Graham-Cassidy bill.

Moderate Senator Susan Collins, R-Maine, is also expected to vote against the bill, which would prevent Republicans from reaching the 50 votes needed to pass the legislation with a tiebreaker by Vice President Mike Pence.

Senate Republicans only have until the end of the month to repeal and replace Obamacare with a simple majority.

Ahead of McCain's announcement, President Donald Trump warned Republicans of the consequences of voting against the bill.

"Rand Paul, or whoever votes against Hcare Bill, will forever (future political campaigns) be known as 'the Republican who saved ObamaCare,'" Trump said in a post on Twitter.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ken., previously signaled his intent to bring the Graham-Cassidy bill to the floor next week.

(Photo: Gage Skidmore)

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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