President Trump tweeted Monday that Senate Republicans wouldn’t “dare” leave Washington before dealing with health care, and GOP leaders later said they could have a new bill drafted as early as this week.
“I cannot imagine that Congress would dare leave Washington without a new HealthCare bill fully approved and ready to go!” Trump tweeted at 6:47 a.m., as senators were returning to Capitol Hill after a weeklong recess.
Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn (R-Texas) told reporters to expect a tweaked version of the bill this week, with an updated Congressional Budget Office score to follow.
“Hopefully next week we’ll be prepared to take the bill up and vote on it,” he added.
Republicans have less than two weeks to muster 50 votes before Congress’ six-week August recess.
At least 10 Republican senators have already declared their opposition to the original draft legislation.
Some holdouts, like Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), have suggested collaborating with Democrats to fix flaws in the 2010 ObamaCare law.
Collins told reporters Monday she hopes GOP leaders will introduce “more than tweaks” in their revised bill, “or else I won’t be able to support it.”
Hours after Trump’s Twitter warning, the White House was more optimistic.
“We’re confident that it’s going to pass” before the August recess, said legislative-affairs director Marc Short, who conceded that Democrats have “been more organized in their [health-care] messaging than I think collectively Republicans have.”
White House ‘confident’ new health care bill will pass