Tags: Healthcare Reform | tim kaine | praises | murkowski | against | obamacare | repeal

Kaine Praises Murkowski for Standing Against Obamacare Repeal

MSNBC

By    |   Thursday, 27 Jul 2017 03:14 PM

Former Democratic vice presidential nominee Sen. Tim Kaine Thursday defended Alaska GOP Sen. Lisa Murkowski for being one of the few Republicans holding out on repealing Obamacare, and criticized Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke for bringing pressure against her and other members of the Alaska delegation over her decision.

"That pressure is intense," the Virginia senator told NBC's Andrea Mitchell on her noon MSNBC program. "What Lisa said is pretty important, that 'we're getting pressure from our constituents to help them and not hurt them.'"

Kaine said he has no doubt that Murkowski will continue to put Alaskans first, despite Zinke, President Donald Trump, or others putting pressure on her.

Thursday, Murkowski told CBS News that Zinke delivered a warning to her about her vote, telling her that Trump "wasn't pleased with the vote that I had taken, and I knew that."

The contact was first reported by The Alaska Dispatch News, which said Zinke also called Alaska Sen. Dan Sullivan, a Republican.

The calls came after Trump slammed Murkowski on Twitter for her vote, saying she let her party down. The Dispatch reported that Zinke told her that her vote jeopardized her relationship with the Trump administration.

On Thursday, Murkowski told CBS that the conversation with Zinke was "difficult" but she did not think it was appropriate to call it a threat.

Meanwhile, Kaine termed the ongoing talks over Obamacare, including the upcoming vote on a "skinny repeal" that Senate Democrats are hearing that Republicans still do not have a plan.

"Last night our leader, Sen. Chuck Schumer on the floor made a point," said Kaine. "He goes, look, we're not going to vote on any more amendments unless you put your actual bill on the table. The bill that's on the table is the House bill. That's dead and everybody knows it can't get the votes."

The option preferred by the Senate Republicans got just 43 of their votes, said Kaine, and the bill for a clean repeal got just 46, so they don't have a version yet.

The skinny repeal would still take insurance away from 16 million people, said Kaine, while driving up costs and disrupting the insurance markets.

"What I do know is what's the right thing to do, which is what John McCain said yesterday, put it in the health committee," said Kaine. "Let the chair, Lamar Alexander, and our ranking member, Patty Murray, do like they have done so often, find common cause."

Kaine on Thursday also called Trump's tweet announcing a ban on transgender individuals serving in the military "inappropriate."

"If you are qualified to serve and you meet tough qualifications you should be able to serve," said Kaine. "I was really proud that Gen. [Joseph] Dunford put out a statement saying that we're not going to start treating our people with disrespect, that if you're qualified to serve, we thank you for your service, we don't ban you from serving. That was my first reaction."

There also was no indication, during a hearing last week, that such a motion was coming.

"When the president put this out yesterday and said, you know, based on advice of military leaders, I thought, 'I bet he hasn't gotten any advice,'" said Kaine.

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Former Democratic vice presidential nominee Sen. Tim Kaine Thursday defended Alaska GOP Sen. Lisa Murkowski for being one of the few Republicans holding out on repealing Obamacare, and criticized Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke for bringing pressure against her and...
tim kaine, praises, murkowski, against, obamacare, repeal
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2017-14-27
Thursday, 27 Jul 2017 03:14 PM
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