While a handful of Republican senators have openly questioned the new Senate health care bill, President Donald Trump targeted Democrats in a morning Twitter storm. He called the party “obstructionists” and openly wondered if Republicans should just let the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, “crash and burn.”
“The Democrats have become nothing but OBSTRUCTIONISTS, they have no policies or ideas. All they do is delay and complain,” Trump wrote. “They own ObamaCare!”
Trump then tweeted about a Washington Post report published on June 23 that President Barack Obama received CIA documents showing that Russian President Vladimir Putin was personally behind the cyber campaign to influence the U.S. presidential election.
However, after several posts on that subject, Trump returned to the health care battle. “Republican Senators are working very hard to get there, with no help from the Democrats,” Trump wrote. “Not easy! Perhaps just let OCare crash & burn!”
The Democrats are the minority party in both the House, where the American Health Care Act passed without a single Democratic vote, and the Senate. The party can’t filibuster the Senate health care bill, which was finally unveiled on June 22. However, the Democrats tried to slow down Senate business with parliamentary tactics and speeches last week that criticized Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for allowing the bill to be drafted in secret and without Democratic input. Democratic Senators Chris Murphy, Cory Booker and Brian Schatz filmed a Facebook video showing themselves trying to get a copy of the Senate bill on June 20 with no success.
McConnell is hoping to have a vote on the bill before the end of the week, when the Senate will start its July 4 recess. In an appearance on ABC’s This Week, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said he thinks there’s a “50-50 chance” that the bill passes. He called the legislation “devastating.”
But McConnell has to worry about just trying to get his own party to vote for it. Fiscal conservative Senators Mike Lee, Rand Paul, Ted Cruz and Ron Johnson issued a joint statement against the bill. Senators Dean Heller of Nevada also said he couldn’t support it, saying that it doesn’t protect the “most vulnerable Nevadans” and citing the cuts to Medicaid.
Senator Susan Collins of Maine also told ABC News that it’s “hard” for her to see how the bill will pass this week.
“I want to wait to see the CBO [Congressional Budget Office] analysis, but I have very serious concerns about the bill,” Collins said, referring to the non-partisan analysis of the bill that could be out as soon as today.