Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer condemned the newly released Republican Senate healthcare bill, calling it “a wolf in sheep’s clothing.”
In a speech on Capitol Hill on Thursday, Schumer, a Democrat from New York, argued that the long-awaited bill is in some ways “even worse” than the House version of the American Health Care Act, which was passed last month.
“The president said the House bill was mean,” he said. “The Senate bill may be meaner.”
The legislation, called the Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017, would roll back much of the Affordable Care Act, the healthcare law better known as Obamacare, including various tax provisions, and scale back funding that goes toward health coverage for low-income Americans and tax credits for middle-income earners who purchase their own health insurance.
The plan would also provide funding designed to help stabilise the Obamacare insurance markets in the near term and funnel money through programs to cut off access to funding for abortion providers.
“The way this bill cuts healthcare is heartless,” Schumer said.
The Senate legislation contains key differences from the House version of the bill. The disparities could be sticking points if the two chambers have to compromise on the bill, which they would have to do before it could reach President Donald Trump’s desk.
After Schumer condemned the bill, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell noted that since the bill was just released Thursday morning, Schumer hadn’t actually read the whole thing before commenting on it.
“The speech you just heard was about a bill he hadn’t seen,” he said.
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