Senate healthcare overhaul: Hopes and hurdles

As Republicans scrambled Sunday to wrangle enough votes to pass health care reform legislation, United States president Donald Trump - in an unusual bid to reach out to his political opponents - urged Democrats to support bill.

After Spicer spoke, Republican Senator Dean Heller became the fifth Republican opponent on Friday, saying he would not support the bill in its current form.

"I can not support a bill that is going to result in tens of millions of people losing their health insurance", said Sen.

The end to funding for Obamacare's expansion of Medicaid and a move to cap how much the federal government spends on the state-federal health program for the poor could harm state budgets and program beneficiaries, according to America's Health Insurance Plans.

"The current bill does not repeal Obamacare", Rand Paul, one of the four Senators, along with Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, Ted Cruz of Texas, and Mike Lee of Utah, who have said in a joint statement that they're "not ready to vote for this bill".

With unanimous opposition from Democrats, McConnell can afford to lose just two of the 52 GOP senators and still prevail on the bill.

Yet the measure will live or die in the Senate on Republican support.

"When President Trump called the House health care bill mean, I couldn't agree more", Cantwell said. Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell smiles as he leaves the chamber after announcing the release of the Republicans' healthcare bill.

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Under the plan, states could drop benefits that were required under Obamacare, formally known as the Affordable Care Act, such as maternity care, emergency room services and mental health treatment.

(AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin). People are removed from a sit-in outside of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's office as they protest proposed cuts to Medicaid, Thursday, June 22, 2017 on Capitol Hill in Washington. Ben Ray, a senior communications adviser for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, said in a post on Twitter that Heller's video footage from Friday's press conference is "already clipped and saved".

Barrasso also disagreed with the argument by Durbin and other Democrats that the GOP is trying to dismantle Medicaid to use the money for tax breaks.

Trump tells "Fox and Friends" that "we've a very good plan".

The CBO said it would issue its assessment of the Senate bill early this week. It also would provide more generous tax subsidies than the House bill to help low-income people buy private insurance. George Stephanopoulos asked, referring to the non-partisan office's upcoming analysis of the bill's impact and costs.

"Leadership knows how I feel and what I need", Heller said, but another question is whether leadership will need him. "I think that they'll probably get there, but we'll have to wait and see".

U.S. President Donald Trump is bemoaning what he calls "the level of hostility" among the parties that has stymied bipartisanship.

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