Rand Paul: This is NOT an Obamacare repeal

Republicans in Congress are claiming they’re nearing the required vote threshold in the Senate to pass a long-promised Obamacare repeal package. The only problem: It’s really just an Obamacare extension.

The current Obamacare repeal push, brainchild legislation of Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Dean Heller (R-Nev.) and Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), would keep most of Obamacare in place while diverting funding for programs such as Medicaid to individual states. The legislation would allow the GOP establishment to claim “victory” on Obamacare repeal without creating massive troubles for GOP moderates like  Sens. Susan Collins (Maine) and Lisa Murkowski (Ak.) in states now reliant on government largess which came via Obamacare’s massive Medicaid expansion.

Essentially, the legislation simply moves Obamacare funds around– which its proponents say is a plus because it theoretically would give states more control over how funding is handled.

Critics of the legislation, however, are calling the effort dishonest to voters who supported candidates based on repeal promises.

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), one of Capitol Hill’s most ardent opponents of the current plan, contends that passage would mean Republicans are taking ownership of Obamacare rather than repealing the healthcare law in any meaningful way.

“Republicans now providing the funding for ObamaCare,” Paul said would the message to voters.

Earlier this week, the Kentucky Republican told reporters that the deal currently on the table would be worse for conservatives than leaving Obamacare alone and allowing the healthcare scheme to collapse under its own weight.

And as his Senate colleagues became increasingly confident following a closed-door meeting Thursday to discuss the measure, Paul didn’t back down.

Following that tweet, the Kentucky senator got push back from Cassidy.

The Kentucky lawmaker continued speaking out against the legislation throughout the day Friday:

Despite Paul’s conservative protests against the bill, the Republican establishment and the Trump administration are charging ahead with hopes of passing the Graham/Cassidy Obamacare legislation ahead of Sept. 30 when the fiscal year comes to a close. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told the Congressional Budget Office to rush scoring on the current measure in order to help facilitate a vote before that date– under budget-reconciliation  rules, the Senate can pass the measure with a simple majority prior to the deadline.

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