tv Washington Journal Mary Ellen Mc Intire on Renewed Senate Efforts to... CSPAN September 20, 2017 8:03am-8:31am EDT
also as someone who had responsibility for the integrity of elections in my state. us toust don't want normalize this moment. i think your job will be made difficult by the fact that you will put pressure on the russians to stop interfering in our elections and others while you have a president of the u.s. who is actively trying to cloud this question and often uses his personal communication device to call it a hoax. i don't want us to normalize what is happening today, where our diplomats are telling one line and the president is a differentowing one on his twitter feed. i appreciate people of your capacity doing this job. your job is made uniquely pot -- hard in an unprecedented way. host: joining us now, mary ellen mcintire of cq roll call.
she covers health care in that. talk about the drivers of this. who are the two senators, what are they interested in and tell us about the legislation? guest: the republican senators working on the plan are bill cassidy of louisiana and lindsey graham of south carolina. bill cassidy was a physician before coming to congress. lindsey graham and him started working early in the summer around when senate republicans were looking to overhaul in july, they started coming up with this plan. saying if we could get to congress, we will -- conference, they will do this plan. this bill would take effectively starting in 2020, the funding for the affordable care act. ,he funding goes to tax credits cautionary payments to help people afford out-of-pocket payments, put it all into a general fund and then block grant that to states based on
different formulas to determine how much each state would get under their program. that is what we are looking at. potentially a vote as soon as next week. host: talk about why they think a block grant system is the best way to go. guest: you give the states money and you tell states do what you want with it. it gives state governors a lot of flexibility, which comes with a lot of responsibility. this would be a big change in terms of how health care in the u.s. is funded. saying givers are the state, the people close to constituents, give them the chance to provide what's going on in health care and put them in charge. host: you talk about formulas and how they determine it. does that mean a state like california would get more money like a state for -- versus a state like vermont?
the formulas are very complex based on funding for 10 years. the transition would begin in 2020. there are three different ways. effectively, different states would get different amounts of money depending on how many people are covered, people hurt within a certain income range, people who have coverage at a certain time. things like that they are looking for. certain states that expanded medicaid might see funding cut under this. others with the additional funding coming in. everyone would get a different amount. host: as far as critics of this approach, who are they? particularly are there republican critics? couple of do see a republican critics from different angles. senator rand paul says that it is too similar to obamacare, he
says it does not repeal enough of its taxes, it leaves a lot in place. collins has not said she won't vote for it, but she has said she has a lot of concerns and questions, wants to see an analysis of this bill about people moving coverage and the transition. there are critics of the process. this bill was formally released by the senators last week. next monday, the finance committee will hold a hearing on this bill. that was called two days ago or so. the congressional budget office is not released an analysis of the bill. they said early next week they are planning to put out a preliminary analysis. they won't have coverage numbers or specific details. host: that largely impacted the last ever they made when those numbers came out. guest: a lot of republican say i can't look at it until i know how this will affect my state.
there are different organizations coming out with their assessment. a lot of senators are working with their governors to look at it and what it would mean for their state directly. one set i want to know what it means for -- host: mary ellen mcintire joins us to talk about the future of the affordable care act. 202-748-8000 for democrats, 202-748-8001 for republicans. independence 202-748-8002 -- independents 202-748-8002. almost this time republicans are ok to say it does not matter or not if we have a score. what is the philosophy there? guest: some are saying we've done so much work on this, we know and can figure out what we need without the cbo. i remember from early this some
, a lot- from this summer of republicans have been critical of the analysis, but they've had a lot of things wrong about obamacare. why would putting so much faith in the cbo? they say they don't get everything right. there were a lot of questions raised. there's been a lot of argument, republicans say this cbo puts too much stock in the individual mandate as well. jonathan gruber has said that individual mandate might not work as well. there is a lot of criticism that they put too much stock in the individual mandate and this would repeal the individual mandate. that's that affected significantly. that is why it says so many more people would lose coverage. oft: one of the criticisms the process was the idea of regular order. senator john mccain talked about
hearings, will they be satisfied as far as hearings leading up to the scheduled vote next week? guest: it is hard to tell. john mccain made a big deal of regular order on this. he has indicated this is being hastily called. the cbo score may not be ready when this finance committee is having the hearing. it is hard to tell. he has not said how he would vote on the legislation. he is one of those swing votes people are looking at. , the as far as the mood last time they went down this road, you saw senators off the bat express criticism. is there a different mood in the sense of this getting to the house? there has been a lot of optimism. you do have a couple senators were questioning things, but generally you have a lot of senators were open to this. there is a deadline.
september 30. that is the last day they can pass the obamacare repeal bill without a full majority. a lot of republicans really want to be able to do this. there is a movement towards it. , theyon't have 50 votes don't have 50 yes votes. they are working on things. it will be interesting to see how that affects things as well. host: first call is from california, democrats line. good morning. caller: thank you for holding this debate this morning. i have called my senators from california and they do not support this bill and the reason they do not support this bill is not do the bill does what they say it does. it gets rid of those pre-existing conditions, it gets rid of those benefits that are important to everyone getting
health care. it increases the premiums that everybody would be paying for health care. jimmy kimmel said on his show last night that senator cassidy lied to his face, which cassidy did lie to his face. which is insulting integrating and disgraceful as a senator to lie to the american people about what a bill does when it does not do what they say it does. jimmy kimmel was 100% correct. host: thank you. guest: i haven't gotten to see that segment yet. i will have to watch that. that is a lot of some of the criticism you will hear from democrats. issue was that ensures can't deny coverage with pre-existing conditions, but they can seek exemption status from something that helped community rating which prevents
insurers from charging certain individuals more than healthier individuals. that is a factor of the bill. the republicans would say they have a requirement in their to make sure everyone, including people with pre-existing conditions can get access to affordable coverage. that is a criticism your hearing a lot from democrats. democrats appear, as they have been, steadfastly opposed to this proposal. they have been working to work on a bipartisan fix that now appears to be doomed. those california senators are definitely still opposed. host: two thoughts on twitter. of thestand it's part rule you need a score and asked if you can explain how it can be voted on without a score? guest: this is a confusing thing. thatbo score needs to show
the deficit numbers. they need a certain percentage of savings. the preliminary score is affected -- effective to show those details, but it may not show details on coverage numbers , which some senators said was important to them. host: rand paul is -- one tweet said grant was such a negative force to ending -- to health care. role.bout the president's guest: the white house has comey, out in favor -- has out in favor. vice president mike pence had lunch with senate republicans yesterday and was urging that this is their chance to repeal and replace. the white house pushing this is definitely important. this is the kind of thing where you see the vice president and president really urging senators to vote for this and getting involved.
sometimes that is more successful. it is definitely important. host: democrats line from maryland. caller: thank you for taking my call. disgrace, what a the republicans are doing to america, including the president. to have this bill pushed down our throats with not one single public hearing, without a cbo effect tens of millions. getting rid of obamacare, instead of fixing it, because i think that's the way to go. you need to fix obamacare because i think that's the closest we will get in terms of fairness for all. i think what it comes to medicaid and the elderly, and
people with pre-existing conditions, this is really sad. the republicans of showed us their hand and it's not good. there were efforts legislatively to stabilize the current affordable care act. where are we on that? hadt: the health committee held four hearings throughout september on stabilizing the individual insurance market. they wanted to come up with a small -- to stabilize the market. last night, those efforts sort of appeared to be over for the time being. senator alexander put out a statement saying we will not be able to reach a consensus to bring senate leadership. senator murray put a statement that said this is the republican leadership. tolder ryan had apparently the senate that the house has an
appetite for this. i think with the push for grand cassidy, that definitely complicated things -- graham cassidy, that definitely complicated things. charles is from colorado, independent line. go ahead, charles. caller: i have two quick points here. since ihe points is think the 1967 health act, i was reading a few days ago, it says we will not deny people coverage if they come to the hospital. is if this saying bill throws and 30 million people off health care and they can afford to pay into the system, they will go to the hospital and they will get treated. , that counts as
welfare. they are not paying into the system. they are getting an entitlement. if we do that, who pays for it? the taxpayers. if we think it's going to save us money and decrease the debt by getting rid of all these people, they are wrong. one of the biggest factors in the aca that had a problem was getting young people to enroll. what that tells me is we need to go to medicare for all, a system the is run on 2% instead of insurance system run on close to 20%. guest: the medicare for all push, you saw that percent -- from sen. sanders: that is not expected, up any -- expected to come up any time soon. the big focus is out get more
younger and healthier people into the market to shore up that risk will. that was discussed very frequently in the hearings earlier this month. one of the arguments and senators cassidy and graham say is that state governors are in a better position to enroll people than at a federal level because they can make sure they say you can get some of those younger and healthier people in the pool. republicans are saying let's give states the power year to to take stepshere to reach those younger people. host: another tweet from the president saying i hope republican senators will fulfill their promise to repeal and replace obamacare. this is a look for a win not only from the president, but for republicans. guest: as you recall, the president was very harsh on twitter after republicans were not able to roll back the
affordable care act earlier this summer. he put a lot of pressure on mitch mcconnell to bring this back. i think you are seeing the president wants to -- on this. for a lot of republicans, this is something they campaigned on. this is something they said they would do. i think a lot of people have seen some pushback since they haven't repealed it. host: this was a tweet sent it arizonaent out by the governor. he said graham cassidy is the best path forward to repeal and replace obamacare. has 12 days to say yes to graham cassidy, it is time to get the job done. what is the governor's influence on this? guest: governors would be hugely responsible for this legislation if it were to become law. a lot of senators have an saying
they are talking to their governor, they want to see with their governor things. ducey of arizona talks with john mccain a lot. if he puts pressure on mccain to support this legislation. you have seen a lot of governors from both sides on this. yesterday there was a group of bipartisan governors. they came out and said to senate leaders we don't want to do consider this bill, we think you should take the bipartisan .pproach, stabilize the markets that included governors like john kasich. you also have several republican --ernors who have endorsed maybe not graham cassidy, but endorsed flexible block grants. the governor influence is very important and can be a sign as to what a senator maybe thinking
about. host: have we seen a tell from lisa murkowski on what she's thinking about? guest: she has a lot of questions. she is keeping her options open. she is not forecasting either way what she is thinking. she is back in alaska. she talked about how that's a place where she can think about things. the is something i think republican senate caucus definitely wants to do -- wants to know sooner rather than later if they have the votes. they don't want to go through something like they went through in july. host: on our republican line from wisconsin, go ahead. caller: i'm watching this little girl. where do you find these people at? this girl has no experience in anything with health care? host: we have invited her to talk to you and answer questions. do you have a question?
caller: yes. get your experience from? been a health care reporter lon capitol hill for the past two years. i talked to lawmakers daily about these issues, try to understand where they are coming from and what they are thinking. talk to analysts and experts about what -- that's where i get my experience from. let's go to grover in virginia. is anyone looking into how much money the republicans have spent trying to get rid of obamacare for the last 10 years? and did nothing else. what they need to do is take all their salaries that they absolutely did nothing for 10 years, pass no bills and take that money and fix obamacare.
that is correct, have been after obamacare. there has not been a bipartisan look at fixing this. in any major health care bill, there will be things that come up, unexpected consequences. -- obamacare is a very politically charged issue. we haven't seen one way or another a bipartisan fix to that. that was something we saw from the health committee starting to do, but all along, senators alexander and mary -- murray said this was a very tall tax. -- task. appears thatow, it is not going to be what happens. depending on what happens with this bill, we will see what happens going forth.
hear from mitch mcconnell yesterday talking about the proposals out there. : last week,nnell our colleague from vermont unrolled legislation that would quadruple the problems with obamacare. it envisions what would be a fully government-run single-payer system. the kind of system that would strip so many americans of their health plans and take away so many decisions over their own health care. that would require almost unimaginably high tax increases. collapsed inady the senator's home state of vermont when they tried to do it. expansion of ave failed idea. not a serious solution. the democrats are coalescing around it anyway. they apparently think this
massive expansion of a failed idea is what american health care future should look like. you can be sure they will do everything in their power to impose it on our country. but we don't have to accept this as our future. certainly what senators graham and cassidy believed. they rolled out a proposal of their own that would repeal the was of obamacare and replace that failed law's failed approach with a new one, allowing states and governors to actually implement better health care ideas by taking more decision-making power out of washington. governors and state legislators of both parties would have both the opportunity and the responsibility to help make quality and affordable health care available to their citizens in a way that works in their own particular state. it is an intriguing idea and one that has a great deal of support. mary ellen mcintire, tell
us about senator mcconnell's efforts on this. guest: this was interesting to me because it's the first time since they return to the august recess that senator maccoll and -- senator maccoll -- senator mcconnell has spoken about health care. he it is a told senators graham get 50sidy, when you votes, bring it to me and we will do this thing. the past couple of days, i think senator mcconnell has gone all in on this. to put somehance pressure on this. we need to get this done. the whips team has been doing account today's levels of support. him saying publicly this is something as a great deal of support, it's an intriguing idea, he is comparing it to the medicare for all plan from senator sanders. republicans think this is a vastly superior idea.
and medicare for all is something they are greatly opposed to. you are them puts more pressure on this. -- whatat you expect you want our viewers to watch out for in this? bigt: what's really the question right now is where do senators mccain and murkowski go. ones capitol hill is looking at because they were crucial votes that voted against. senator collins said she had a lot of concerns. she had more concerns about this bill than earlier bills. i think she is slightly considered to be a no vote even though she hasn't said that publicly. look for how this is planning people's home states. senators are home, you will see pushes from both sides, encouraging senators who might be on the fence and are publicly saying they are undecided to either vote for or against it. mary ellen mcintire
talking about the future of the affordable care act. thank you for your time. tour ofy six of our cities and states as part of our c-span buses that rolled across the state capitals. we are in new jersey's capital. we will be joined by one former and current elected official. later on, the current president of the new jersey state senate, steve sweeney. we will be right back. ♪ that was early on when i believe trump had just announced and they were worried that he was going to be bad for them in terms of voters and i thought really? you are worried now? considering how far back that platform withman
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