Sep 19, 2017

Senate likely to start voting on GOP health plan next Wednesday

Caitlin Owens, author of Vitals

The latest ACA repeal bill could get a vote next week. ((AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Senate leadership is aiming to start voting on the Cassidy-Graham health care plan next Wednesday. "I think so. I think that's the likely thing," Sen. Roy Blunt, a member of leadership, told me.

  • Leadership is still trying to figure out where each senator stands.
  • The vehicle Republicans are using to pass the bill with only a 50-vote threshold expires next Saturday.

What we're watching: Sens. Lisa Murkowski and John McCain. If either of them (or a wild card) comes out against the bill before next week, it's unclear whether it would come to the floor. "Some don't want to take another tough vote if the whole team (or at least 50) isn't on board. Some say we can't get this close and not try by forcing the vote – make people identify where they are. I think the 'vote no matter what' school is winning out," a senior GOP aide said.

Go deeper

American carnage

Protesters race up a hill to avoid tear gas in Philadelphia, June 1. Photo: Mark Makela/Getty Images

The list of victims has swiftly grown since George Floyd died in police custody just eight days ago.

The big picture: Protests against police brutality have turned into a showcase of police brutality, with tear gas and rubber bullets deployed against crowds. The police have the arsenals at their disposal, but we're also seeing law enforcement officers becoming targets.

McConnell blocks resolution condemning Trump's actions against peaceful protesters

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) blocked a resolution introduced by Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) on Tuesday that would have condemned the use of tear gas and rubber bullets against peaceful protesters outside the White House on Monday in order to allow President Trump to walk to St. John's Church.

What they're saying: "Justice for black Americans in the face of unjust violence, and peace for our country in the face of looting, riots, and domestic terror. Those are the two issues Americans want addressed," McConnell said on the Senate floor.

George W. Bush breaks silence on George Floyd

Goerge Bush in Michigan in 2009. Photo: Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

Former President George W. Bush (R) wrote in a statement Tuesday that he and his wife, Laura, are "anguished" by the death of George Floyd, and said that "it is time for America to examine our tragic failures."

Why it matters: It's a stark juxtaposition when compared to fellow Republican President Trump's response to current civil unrest. While Trump has called for justice in Floyd's death, he's also condemned protestors and threatened to deploy military personnel if demonstrations continue.