Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) has been trashing the Graham-Cassidy health care bill all over town. Introduced by Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Bill Cassidy (R-LA), the legislation is the GOP's last chance to repeal Obamacare. The Rhode Island Democrat seemed well briefed on what's in the bill when he spit all over it on CNN Thursday.
"For starters, you don't protect pre-existing conditions when you allow states to deny coverage for pre-existing conditions, which this bill does," Whitehouse said. "Second, he focuses only on the states that get money under his bill, not the ones like my state that have that money taken from them to give to the other states."
"It's basically a raid on blue states and states that adopted the Medicaid expansion, to take money to those states. So it's really unfair just to pick out those states and say that you're winning," Whitehouse added.
It sure sounded like he knew the bill like the back of his hand, until Alisyn Camerota asked him for more specifics.
"I've seen reviews of it," he said, before admitting he "hasn't read the language of it."
Makes sense. We all know Whitehouse and his colleagues are experts at not reading bills.
Graham and Cassidy have been defending their bill in the face of criticism not only on cable news but on late night TV. Jimmy Kimmel berated Cassidy for reneging on the promises he made on his show to protect patients with pre-existing conditions. He was "disappointed" in the senator, he told his millions of viewers.
Graham and Cassidy forcefully pushed back at those charges on MSNBC, explaining their plan does protect those with pre-existing conditions. Graham added that he wishes Kimmel would have called Cassidy before his misleading rant last night.