From the Washington Post:
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) urged President Trump to hold off on pushing for a court-ordered destruction of the Affordable Care Act, advice the president ultimately ignored, according to a senior Republican official familiar with the conversation.
The unheeded counsel, which McCarthy recounted to fellow lawmakers in recent days, underscores the angst that has set in among Republicans now that Trump is pursuing the politically precarious strategy with no plan in hand to replace Barack Obama’s signature health-care law.
During a closed-door lunch on Tuesday, Trump relayed to Senate Republicans that he had come up with a slogan — “Republicans are the party of health care” — on the short ride over from the White House to the Capitol, said people familiar with the gathering, who requested anonymity to discuss private conversations.
Trump told the Republicans that he “owned” the issues of the economy and border security, but the party is vulnerable on health care. He said he wanted to get a new plan during the election, according to those familiar with the gathering.
Trump’s strategy has hardly been universally embraced.
“It’s the dumbest thing I have ever heard,” said a senior GOP aide, who requested anonymity to speak candidly. “It is the equivalent of punching yourself in the face repeatedly.”
Colin Hanks @ColinHanks
If he’s so damn impressed with the swept floors of the forests of Finland someone tell him about their healthcare system.
Republican Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin said Tuesday that he thinks that Sen. John McCain’s brain tumor and the early morning hours may have affected the Arizona Republican’s no vote on the Senate bill to repeal Obamacare.
McCain voted no on the so-called skinny repeal, explaining in a radio interview last week that he disagreed with the process leading up to the vote and saying he supported repealing Obamacare but with an immediate replacement. McCain returned to the Senate to vote on health care-related legislation after a surgery to remove a blood clot revealed he had brain cancer.
Johnson argued that the brain tumor may have affected McCain’s vote.
“We did get a call from Paul (Ryan) and he assured us that skinny repeal was not going to pass the House it would have to go to conference,” said the Wisconsin senator on AM560 “Chicago’s Morning Answer.”
“Again, I’m not gonna speak for John McCain — he has a brain tumor right now — that vote occurred at 1:30 in the morning, some of that might have factored in,” he continued.
Seemingly shocked, a radio host responded “really?” to Johnson’s comments and asked if he really believed McCain’s brain tumor might have factored into his judgment.
“Again, I-I-I don’t know exactly what — we really thought — and again I don’t want speak for any senator,” Johnson responded. “I really thought he was going to vote yes to send that to conference at 10:30 at night. By about 1, 1:30, he voted no. So you have talk to John in terms what was on his mind.”
President Donald Trump continued his social media attacks on Senate Republicans Saturday afternoon, calling on lawmakers to “demand another vote” to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act unless they “are total quitters.”
“Unless the Republican Senators are total quitters, Repeal & Replace is not dead! Demand another vote before voting on any other bill!” the president wrote on Twitter.
Trump also on Saturday afternoon seemingly warned lawmakers that if a new health care bill is “not approved quickly,” he could revoke their health care benefits.
“If a new HealthCare Bill is not approved quickly, BAILOUTS for Insurance Companies and BAILOUTS for Members of Congress will end very soon!” the president wrote.
Senate Republicans are still hoping John McCain makes it to Tuesday’s crucial Obamacare repeal vote.
The absence of the Arizona senator, who was diagnosed with brain cancer last week, has made getting 50 votes to start debate on the bill exceedingly difficult. GOP leaders are hoping he can surprise everyone and return Tuesday.
“They were trying to get approval [from his doctors] for his travel arrangements. I’ve personally volunteered to rent an RV,” said Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn of Texas. “But we haven’t heard anything.”
From the Washington Post, on the cynicism of Republicans not knowing or caring what’s in the health care bill they will be voting on:
Instead, what they say is, “We made a promise, and we’re going to keep it.” If Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) handed them a bill saying that all children on Medicaid would be taken to the desert, buried up to their necks in the sand, and covered in fire ants, at least 40 of them would say, “It may not be perfect, but we have to keep the promise we made to repeal Obamacare, so I’m voting yes.”
Two people were recommended for post-exposure rabies treatment after a consumer in Florida reported finding a dead bat in a packaged salad mix, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Saturday.
The bat was sent to the CDC after it was found in a bag of Fresh Express Organic Marketside Spring Mix.
“The deteriorated condition of the bat did not allow for CDC to definitively rule out whether this bat had rabies,” the Atlanta-based agency said
The CDC said the risk of rabies transmission was extremely low but not zero, so the two people who ate salad mix were recommended for treatment as a precaution.
They are fine and show no signs of having rabies, the CDC said.
How can you not notice a deteriorated bat in your salad before you eat it?
No. You said it would happen on Day One.
Senator Patty Murray @PattyMurray
A rare look inside the GOP’s women’s health caucus.
Not a hooter toter in sight. The irony obviously escapes them.