While Senate Republican leaders push for a vote next week on a yet-to-be-seen health care bill, Sen. Marco Rubio today suggested that won’t happen.
“Perhaps what they produce is something that everyone is agreement in, so you can move to a vote fairly quickly. But my sense of it is there will still be some differences that need to be worked out,” the Florida Republican said on Fox & Friends.
“We want to do this as quickly as possible because it is having an impact on the markets in the sense that people want to know what the replacement is going to be. But we also have to do it right.
Apart from the fact that it was based on a flawed ideology, one of the reasons Obamacare failed is because they rushed it through and they didn’t fully understand it – The famous quote, ‘We need to pass it so we can see what’s in it.’
“We don’t want to make the same mistake. I think we need to do this right. I’m not talking about 6 months from now but certainly sufficient time to understand all of its implications. Because once this passes, it’s going to be harder to get back and try to fix it.”
Rubio has said he wants to understand the effects on Florida, which is a national leader in Obamacare participants. Specifically, he’s said the state should not be penalized for its decision against expanding Medicaid – meaning it would be unfair for expansion states to continue to get extra federal funds. (Senators from those states, of course, won't sign on to anything that takes away money.)
In a Facebook chat this morning, Rubio echoed that point but he also seemed to defend the process in which the bill has been crafted, saying most legislation is written behind closed doors. Once released, he added, senators can assess the merits. He also reminded watchers that he ran on killing Obamacare and was re-elected on the same vow.
Meanwhile, Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson has joined Democrats in slamming the secretive nature of bill.
"We find ourselves confronting a situation where the majority leader has said he's trying to cobble together 50 votes to overturn the existing law," Nelson said Tuesday on the Senate floor. "And it must be something that is not very palatable in what it is to overturn, the existing law. Otherwise it would be done in the open and in the sunshine.
"Now, the existing law is not perfect. So we ought to improve it. But the existing law, as we have heard in some of these dramatic town hall meetings, is the reason that some people are alive today.
It's the reason why some folks no longer have to worry about being denied coverage for a preexisting condition."
For more, visit Tampa Bay Times.