From Talking Points Memo:
After publicly airing some of their grievances with the GOP’s current strategy of repealing Obamacare without a replacement plan, a handful of Republican senators put their concerns in legislative writing. Five senators on Monday evening introduced a measure that would delay the next steps on repealing the Affordable Care Act by more than a month. The senators, in their statements accompanying the provision, said the delay would buy Congress more time to work out of the the details of a replacement.
“This amendment will ensure that we move forward with a smart, responsible plan to replace the law as quickly as possible,” said Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) in a statement announcing the measure. He was joined by Bob Corker (R-TN), Susan Collins (R-ME), Bill Cassidy (R-LA.) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) in introducing the proposal.
The proposal would amend the budget resolution currently being considered by the Senate that is supposed to act as a vehicle for the Republicans’ repeal effort. The budget resolution as it now stands directs the relevant committees in the House and Senate to come up with the actual repeal legislation that will be passed through the process known as reconciliation, which requires only a majority vote in the Senate. The budget resolution, which was introduced last week, gives the committees until Jan. 27 to submit their repeal bills for the next steps in the legislative process.
I posted this story earlier but I didn’t realize that Schumer had just made a few edits to the exact same letter that McConnell had written and sent it back to him.
Anybody else shocked? I didn’t think so.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) wants Democrats concerned about the incomplete ethics vetting of some of Donald Trump’s Cabinet nominees to “grow up,” but he asked for a similarly thorough review of Barack Obama’s nominees back in 2009.
In a letter to then-Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), McConnell requested that nominees’ FBI background checks, Office of Government Ethics reviews and financial disclosure statements be complete “prior to a hearing being noticed.”
The Kentucky senator said this complete set of information was necessary to “ensure that the Senate has had the opportunity to fairly review a nominee’s record and to make a fair decision prior to a vote.”
The Senate is scheduled to hold hearings this week for a number of Trump’s Cabinet picks without those conditions having been met for all nominees. The OGE’s director wrote in a Saturday letter to senior Democrats that the crammed hearing schedule has left his office unable to complete ethics reviews for several of Trump’s picks, including education secretary nominee Betsy DeVos and commerce secretary Wilbur Ross.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said the letter proved that Trump’s transition team was colluding with Senate Republicans “to jam through these Cabinet nominees before they’ve been thoroughly vetted.”
McConnell’s office did not immediately respond Monday to TPM’s request for comment.
What’s something that may be trivial but you can’t get past?
Jimmy Fallon for me. Fuck you Jimmy Fallon and your orange dictator hair tousling fingers.