Facing defections, Senate GOP leaders delay health care vote

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US President Donald Trump summoned all 52 Republican Senators to the White House after eight rebels vowed to oppose his healthcare overhaul.

To the immediate right of Trump sat Alaska Sen.

"We are going to continue the discussions within our conference on the differences that we have that we'll continue to try to litigate", McConnell told reporters. Most wore grim expressions.

The bill has many critics and few outspoken fans on Capitol Hill.

A survey published on Wednesday by USA Today suggests only 12% of Americans support the Senate plan.

The Senate returns from their July 4 recess on July 11.

But adjustments to placate conservatives, who want the legislation to be more stringent, only push away moderates who think its current limits - on Medicaid for example - are too strong. Mr. McConnell, for instance, claimed it would "strengthen Medicaid".

At least four conservative Republican senators - Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, Ron Johnson and Mike Lee - said their opposition remained unchanged after the CBO analysis.

US Senate Republican leaders have delayed the vote on repealing and replacing Obamacare until after next week's Fourth of July holiday due to a lack of party support. That leaves only a slice of a slice of the public offering any kind of support for the bill.

At the White House, Trump proclaimed the bill was still on its way to completion because of the need to repeal the Affordable Care Act.

He made the announcement during Senate Republicans' weekly lunch, which was attended by Vice President Pence.

But the Republicans' own divisions are what has stymied them. One of the swing votes on the bill, Sen.

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As senators boarded a bus to head for the White House later, they were greeted by protesters for Planned Parenthood, who had dressed up as characters from the dystopian novel and television show "The Handmaid's Tale". But others - Susan Collins of Maine, Rob Portman of Ohio, Dean Heller of Nevada - have listened to those who are outraged that they'd even consider such a harmful measure.

Hours earlier Tuesday, second-ranking Republican John Cornyn insisted to reporters that "we're gonna vote, we're gonna pass it" this week.

The ad was pulled Tuesday evening.

A tweaked version then passed the House, with a handful of Republicans opposing it. Trump turned around and branded the House bill "mean", and wanted a Senate bill with more "heart".

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., said on MSNBC if a deal isn't reached by Friday, it could be the end of Republicans' plan to "repeal and replace ObamaCare".

But McConnell is finding it hard to satisfy demands from his diverse caucus. Really? Between whom? The House wants to destroy Obamacare quickly, the Senate a bit more slowly while also cutting Medicaid more steeply over time.

There has been speculation that McConnell had been prepared to bring the bill to the floor, even if it can't pass, so the Senate can move onto its next big priority: tax reform.

In the survey, 45% oppose the Senate bill and almost as many, 40%, say they don't know enough about it to have an opinion. The process-much like that surrounding the House healthcare bill-has been fraught with missteps and negative press. "We're still working toward getting 50 people in a comfortable place".

"Americans need to know @SenDeanHeller is blocking the #RepealAndReplace of FAILING Obamacare!".

It would let states ease Obama's requirements that insurers cover certain specified services like substance abuse treatments.

Hundreds of thousands of people could lose their health insurance and the state could also be out billions of dollars. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimates that the Senate plan, which would cut Medicaid spending by $772 billion over the next 10 years, would result in 15 million fewer people being covered.

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