GOP senators behind the push for a new bill to repeal and replace Obamacare say they are heartened by support as the Senate faces an end-of-the-month deadline for passage.
Sens. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., and Bill Cassidy, R-La., pitched the new legislation at a closed-door GOP caucus lunch Thursday — and Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, has begun the process of testing support by counting possible votes, known as "whipping," The Hill reported.
"What I told Sen. Graham is we would work to try to get a sense of where people were . . . so my hope is we'll get that preliminary information back in the next few days," Cornyn told The Hill.
The bill would end funding for Obamacare's insurance subsidies and instead convert the funding into block grants to states.
But it has to clear the Senate by the end of the month, when special budget rules that allow the healthcare bill to pass by a simple majority will expire, The Hill reported.
At the closed-door lunch, Graham said they might have won over Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., telling The Hill, "He encouraged everybody to jump on board. . . . I'm very pleased with the leader's response."
"I can tell you this — if we had a vote right now we would get 47, 48 votes," he said.
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