Lindsey McPherson

GOP Moderates Still Holding Out on Health Care
18 members confirmed opposition while leadership remains optimistic

By LINDSEY McPHERSON and ERIN MERSHON

Mixed messages about securing needed “yes” votes on the health care bill flew around the House Thursday as a flood of moderates confirmed they remain unswayed by the latest changes.

GOP Moderates Face Health Care Heat
‘Many of our members who were opposed to the bill are probably still opposed’

By LINDSEY McPHERSON and ERIN MERSHON, CQ ROLL CALL

Conservative Republicans put their moderate colleagues in the health care hot seat Wednesday.

Conservatives Ask Will ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ Show More Support for Border Wall?
House Freedom Caucus debates how to vote on spending bill

 

Can conservatives vote for a government spending bill that does not include funding for a border wall?

Conservatives Begin to Accept Health Care Bill, Moderate Votes Unclear
‘Whether it’s this vehicle or another vehicle, it will be addressed.’

By LINDSEY McPHERSON and ERIN MERSHON

UPDATED 1:50 p.m. 04/26/17

Analysis: 5 Ways Republicans Can Finish Health Care Overhaul
No path is a slam dunk, some options have a better chance than others

Republicans have promised their effort to repeal and replace the 2010 health care law is alive and kicking. And they’re likely to keep going at it until they pass a bill or get elected out office. 

There are at least five different legislative paths for getting a health care overhaul passed before next year’s midterm elections — some more viable than others and none guaranteed to work without support from a majority of Republicans.

Government Shutdown Prevention on Republicans, Democrats Say
Leaders urge members to oppose stopgap measure if no bipartisan agreement is reached

House Democrats are putting the onus on Republicans to prevent a government shutdown.

It’s unlikely a bipartisan deal could be reached in time to meet the April 28 funding deadline, and unless an agreement is in place Democrats should vote-against a short-term stopgap measure, Democratic leaders said Thursday.

Tax Overhaul Not Immune to GOP Infighting
Border adjustment tax among issues that could cause intraparty stress

Republicans have said a tax code rewrite will be easier than the health care overhaul that continues to elude them. Whether or not that proves true, a few intraparty battles likely lay ahead on taxes.

The GOP is united around the goal of a tax code overhaul. Republican lawmakers used Tax Day on Tuesday to highlight their shared vision for cutting tax rates, simplifying the code and spurring economic growth.

Wittman Answers Questions at Public Forum, Constituents Hold Mock Town Hall
Republican congressman says he favors smaller-scale meetings over massive town halls

STAFFORD, Va. — Rep. Rob Wittman provided an update on congressional affairs to the local governing body here Tuesday evening. It was his fifth constituent meeting of the day.

Meanwhile, just over 30 miles northwest in Nokesville, Virginia, citizens held a mock town hall to discuss the congressman’s voting record.

Funding Deadline Tests GOP Strategy
Republicans hoped for more under Trump, but still need Democrats’ help

When Republicans kicked the fiscal 2017 spending deadline into April last December, House Speaker Paul D. Ryan said they’d rather negotiate with incoming GOP President Donald Trump than the outgoing Democratic one.

But now, congressional Republicans are talking about largely ignoring requests from the White House as they negotiate with Democrats over a spending bill to take the government off autopilot for the remaining five months of the fiscal year.

Analysis: Moderate Republicans Also to Blame for Health Care Impasse
Arguably more hard ‘no’ votes among moderates than conservatives

Conservatives in the House Freedom Caucus have shouldered the majority of the blame for the Republicans’ failure to repeal and replace the 2010 health care law, but GOP moderates may be equally — if not more — responsible for the impasse. 

There are arguably more hard “no” votes (members not likely to be convinced to move to “yes”) for the GOP leadership’s plan among moderate Republicans than there are among Freedom Caucus members.

House GOP Leaders Tweak Health Care Proposal
Action before recess won’t make bill ready for a vote

House Republican leaders seeking to change the narrative on the health care talks announced plans to tweak their proposal on Thursday before members leave for a two-week recess, a move they touted as “progress.”

But they acknowledged it does not make the legislation ready for a vote.

House Running Out of Week on Health Care
Recess looms as sides make little headway on overhaul

Recent talks among Republicans have given some members hope they are moving closer to their goal of repealing and replacing the 2010 health care law, but the reality is they are still well short of shoring up support as they head home for a two-week recess.

Several House Republicans on Tuesday believed a deal was so close that they could extend the current legislative week to vote on the bill. (The House is scheduled to adjourn for the recess Thursday afternoon).

Paul Ryan Eager to Talk About Taxes, 'Hillbilly Elegy'
Speaker says tax overhaul could be easier lift than health care

House Speaker Paul D. Ryan said Wednesday that Republican efforts to rewrite the tax code will come easier than overhauling the health insurance system because the procedural rules they will use are more conducive to changing tax policy.

“Tax reform, all of that can go into a reconciliation process, so we don’t have the real frustrations that members are experiencing with reconciliation like we have with health care,” the Wisconsin Republican said during a wide-ranging Q&A session hosted by WisPolitics in Washington.

House in Holding Pattern on Health Care
No sign of big push this week on reworked legislation

House Republicans continue to work toward a health care deal but are currently in a holding pattern as they await further details from the Trump administration on proposed changes to the bill.

“We don’t have bill text or an agreement yet,” Speaker Paul D. Ryan told reporters after meeting with the GOP conference Tuesday morning. He declined to discuss details of proposed changes, saying “productive conversations” were happening at the “conceptual level” regarding how to lower insurance premiums while maintaining “solid protections for people.”

Freedom Caucus Isn’t Backing Down After Trump Threat
Conservatives say they’re up for any challenge from the right

If President Donald Trump’s intention was to intimidate House Freedom Caucus members with his assertion on Twitter that “we must fight them” in 2018, it didn’t work.

“If somebody can get to the right of me in the primary, God bless him,” Freedom Caucus member Trent Franks said.

Republicans Want to Keep at It on Health Care Overhaul
Conservatives still aim to use current fiscal year reconciliation bill

In a sign of the renewed Republican optimism surrounding a health care overhaul, several House GOP members say they still want to use the budget reconciliation process for the current fiscal year to pass legislation, effectively providing themselves with less than two months to get a deal.

Leadership has yet to make any concrete decisions on the path forward for health care after pulling a bill last week that would have partially repealed and replaced the 2010 health care law.

Rank and File Might Go Around Paul Ryan
In wake of health care misfire, members look for another way

House Speaker Paul D. Ryan is not in danger of losing his job over his Republican conference’s failure to pass health care legislation, but he is at risk of losing some of his negotiating power. 

Rank-and-file members trying to salvage the GOP’s goal to dismantle the 2010 heath care law are taking matters into their own hands, pushing the effort back on the priority list and hatching plans for where they want to see the next round of negotiations go.

House Floor Schedule Leaves Time for GOP Soul-Searching
Group meetings will be more crucial than usual after health care debacle

The House has a limited floor schedule this week, leaving Republicans plenty of time to huddle behind closed doors and chart the conference’s path forward after their failure to advance their top legislative priority of repealing and replacing the 2010 health care law. 

The intraparty soul searching will begin Tuesday morning during the weekly GOP conference meeting and continue throughout the week during smaller meetings of the Republican factions such as the Tuesday Group, Republican Study Committee and House Freedom Caucus.

A Republican Party Pulled in Multiple Directions
Same factors could bedevil other legislative priorities

House Speaker Paul D. Ryan wasted no time, fresh off his defeat on the Republican health care plan, in pivoting to priorities like a tax overhaul. But the constituencies pulling his party in different directions will still be present for those complicated debates as well.

“Our members know that we did everything we could to get consensus,” the Wisconsin Republican said shortly after he pulled a measure that would have partially accomplished what has motivated his party for more than seven years: getting rid of the 2010 health care law. But in the end, the GOP’s factions pulled it in so many directions that they couldn’t even muster a majority to pass a bill that would put a win on the board.

After Health Care Defeat, Brady Schedules Markup on Trump Tax Returns
Democrats using procedural tool to force committee vote

Hours after House GOP leaders and President Donald Trump on Friday made the decision to finally pull their ill-fated health care plan, one of the bill’s architects made an interesting pivot to Trump’s tax returns.

But not by choice.