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Senator Cantwell's plan to stop Republican health care bill

Dean Heller became the fifth GOP senator to say he would not support the measure in its current form.

Later in the news conference, Heller held up a copy of the bill and said, "This is the bill that I'm voting for on Tuesday ..."

Five Republican senators have announced they will not support the bill, which is created to repeal and replace Obamacare, in its current form.

He becomes the fifth GOP senator to say he will not back the bill as it is now written, and the first in Senate Republicans' so-called moderate wing. Fixing the bill to save Medicaid's expansion theoretically wouldn't convince any of them to change their vote, while further cuts could alienate other so-called "moderate" Republicans like Heller.

Read the entire Better Care Reconciliation Act here. Senate Republican leaders may rely on the deal-making former businessman to lean on conservative senators who are balking at the bill.

Democrats are united in opposition to the proposal, which was worked out in secret by a group led Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

"Every indication suggests that the plan unveiled by Senate Republicans yesterday will be even more devastating to New Jersey than the mean-spirited unpopular bill passed by the House of Representatives earlier this year. Make sure we're taken care of here in the state of Nevada", Heller said. The bill would replace its individual insurance coverage with new subsidies and requirements and cut federal funding for Medicaid. The apparent loss of Heller means that leadership is now within two votes of the bill failing.

The House approved its version of the bill last month.

Consumer advocates fear waivers that allow insurance companies to set which Essential Health Benefits they cover, if any, could be used as a pretense for denying expensive services for someone who has a pre-existing condition.

Asked about the bill's impact on Medicaid insurance coverage for lower-income Iowans, Ernst said, "I wouldn't say they are losing it".

Unraveling Obamacare has proven much harder than expected for Republicans, who now face an uphill fight within their own party to do so.

"When you take a look at the money spent in Medicaid expansion, it's a lot of money, and if we lock in that disparity that's a disadvantage to states like Wisconsin". Now, the uninsured rate may start climbing again, because both the House and Senate bills cut federal financing and repeal an unpopular requirement to carry health insurance. The legislation would phase out federal funding for Medicaid expansion - now covering about 11 million people in 31 states - beginning in 2020, and shift more of those costs back to states. A fourth said he anxious the process was rushed.



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