Sen. Collins: 'We're Going to Draft Our Own' Health Care Bill

Cortney O'Brien
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Posted: May 08, 2017 11:15 AM
Sen. Collins: 'We're Going to Draft Our Own' Health Care Bill

The American Health Care Act that just (narrowly) passed the House of Representatives is going to look nothing like the legislation eventually taken up by the Senate, at least according to Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME). 

"First of all, the House bill is not going to come before us," she said. "The Senate is starting from scratch. We're going to draft our own bill. And I'm convinced that we're going to take the time to do it right."

Specifically, Collins was critical of the House version's protections for people with pre-existing conditions. While those protections exist, she worries coverage will be too expensive. Unlike many of her Republican colleagues in the lower chamber, Collins also indicated she wanted the Senate bill to include Medicaid funding for Planned Parenthood.

She is not the only senator to express skepticism over the GOP's AHCA.  

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) recently noted that the conservative House Freedom Caucus made the bill "a lot less bad," but “there’s still some fundamental problems" with it. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), too, said the bill should be viewed with caution, considering the members barely had time to analyze it before voting.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell also predicted that the AHCA will look different in the Senate. However, the chamber will take no steps until they see the Congressional Budget Office score for the revised House bill, he said.

Collins has introduced a different version of the House bill with Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-LA).