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This Week on the Hill: McConnell Aims for Health Care Vote This Week; CBO, Parliamentarian, Opposition Hurdles Remain

This week has the potential to be the most important of the year in healthcare, as the Senate could vote as early as Thursday evening on their version of a bill to repeal and replace major provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) will likely bring the bill to the floor soon after the release of the Congressional Budget Office’s (CBO) score, which is expected early this week. Before any votes can be cast, the legislation will also need to undergo a review from the Senate parliamentarian to decide which provisions, if any, violate the chamber’s budget reconciliation rules.

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Health Policy Report

The Week in Review The Senate’s version of a health care overhaul was released with a great deal of fanfare last week as supporters and detractors quickly tried to establish their positions on the bill. Four conservative Republican senators — Sens. Rand Paul (R-KY), Ron Johnson (R-WI), Ted Cruz (R-TX), and Mike Lee (R-UT) — announced that they are opposed to the bill in its current form; although they were sure to add the caveat that they are “open to negotiation and obtaining more information before it is brought to the floor.” Moderates have yet to commit to either supporting or opposing the bill, but several said they had concerns with the discussion draft, primarily related to its cuts to Medicaid.