Stories

Shifts on ACA repeal put new pressure on push for bipartisan fix

Sen. John McCain is back in the spotlight on health care. Photo: J. Scott Applewhite/AP

The uncertainty surrounding Senate Republicans' latest repeal-and-replace bill is putting more pressure on Democrats to reach a deal to stabilize the Affordable Care Act.

Sens. Lamar Alexander and Patty Murray have been working on a plan to tweak the ACA through a mix of looser regulations and more reliable funding. And Alexander's hand in those talks may be getting stronger as a side effect of the momentum behind a repeal bill sponsored by Sens. Lindsey Graham and Bill Cassidy.

Why: Sens. Lisa Murkowski and John McCain are publicly rooting for the stabilization effort to succeed, and Graham-Cassidy can't pass without at least one of them.