Trump Believes Senate's "Not That Far Off" From Passing Healthcare Bill, But GOP Senators Say No

Posted: Jun 25, 2017 12:00 PM

Fox News aired a pre-recorded interview with President Trump on "Fox and Friends" Sunday morning which covered a number of topics, including the recently released Senate health care bill. 

Though an estimate from the Congressional Budget Office won't be released until Monday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is pushing for a vote this week, before the July 4 recess. When asked whether the GOP is doing enough to "have his back" on this bill, Trump expressed optimism that McConnell will succeed:

"Health care is a very, very tough thing to get. But I think we're going to get it. We don't have too much of a choice because the alternative is the dead carcass of Obamacare....I don't think they're that far off. Famous last words, right? But I think they're going to get there."

Some GOP senators are not so sure about that.

Five senators have already announced their opposition to the Senate bill. In addition, Susan Collins (R-ME) expressed reservations Thursday, and on Sunday said it would be "extremely difficult" for McConnell to "come up with a bill this week" that both she and Sen. Rand Paul can support. On ABC's "This Week," Collins stated concerns about the cost of premiums and deductibles, the elimination of funding to Planned Parenthood, and what she terms Medicaid cuts.

Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) said Sunday on "Meet the Press" that the Senate should not vote on the bill before the recess.

"We don't have enough information. I don't have the feedback from constituencies who will not have had enough time to view the Senate bill. We should not be voting on this next week."

McConnell can only afford to lose the support of two GOP senators and still pass the bill - and that would necessitate a tie-breaking vote from Vice President Pence. With at least seven senators either completely rejecting the bill or requiring changes before committing to vote for it, McConnell's got a huge task ahead of him this week.