Earlier today, Mitch McConnell unveiled the Senate version of the AHCA. Rumors started flying that several Republicans were already against it, and with all forty-eight Democrats and Independents in the body very, very likely opposing, the bill could only afford to lose the support of two Republicans and still pass. Now, we at the Desk are watching the statements of Republican Senators carefully.
While the “opposition” of Senators Ted Cruz, Ron Johnson, Rand Paul, and Mike Lee made headlines about a half hour ago, Cruz has indicated he is open to further negotiation. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell should not be underestimated with regards to any bill or nomination: if he pushes for something, it’s a safe bet he has already begun working weary members of the party conference.
If this version of the bill is the final draft, perhaps Johnson, Paul, Lee and Cruz remain in the “no” camp. Seven other Republicans are officially undecided, while the Republicans who haven’t made public statements are defaulted to a “yes”. We’ve treated boilerplate “I’m going to read this carefully” Republican statements as yeas because, lets be frank: members committed to a bill will still say these things at release.
We will update as statements are made by each, and as the negotiation and amendment processes play out. We strongly suspect that Republicans currently positioning themselves against the bill or uncertain may very well amend their way to support.
Update: Cory Gardner, who was working on the bill itself… is “still working on the details” when asked for his position on the current draft.
Update: Marco Rubio is reviewing the bill’s impact on his state’s Medicaid program and will not take a position yet, per his statement on the reform draft.
Update: Nevada’s Dean Heller is a no.
Update: We’re moving Cassidy over to the undecided column, as he now has concerns over the bill thanks to the CBO score.