Republican U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson said he’s concerned that he hasn’t seen details of a Senate GOP health care bill that reportedly is being drafted behind closed doors and could receive a vote within weeks.
Johnson, R-Oshkosh, made the remarks to a Bloomberg News reporter Monday.
Asked if he’d seen details of the Senate GOP health care bill, Johnson said no. Asked if that concerned him, Johnson said it did.
“This is incredibly complex and from my standpoint, I need a whole lot more information before I agree to vote yes on a bill,” Johnson said in a statement.
The comments underscore the unusual secrecy with which Senate Republicans are crafting a health care bill to repeal and replace swaths of former President Barack Obama’s health care law. Johnson almost certainly must be one of the 50 votes required to pass a GOP health care bill in the Senate.
Other Senate Republicans, including Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Jeff Flake of Arizona, also told Bloomberg they don’t know what’s in the bill.
Johnson has made the case that Republicans should not rush efforts to roll back Obama’s health care law.
Johnson has suggested the proper course may be to pass a short-term bill to stabilize individual health coverage markets, followed by a more sweeping measure in the long term.
His Senate Republican colleagues may not be listening. They are set to finish crafting a major health care bill soon, the online news outlet Axios reported Monday.
House Republicans passed their health care bill last month. It would remove the Obamacare mandate that everyone purchase health coverage, replace the law’s subsidies to buy health coverage with tax credits, cut Medicaid by more than $800 billion over a decade, opt out of coverage requirements and roll back the law’s taxes on the wealthy and parts of the health care industry.
The Congressional Budget Office found the bill would result in 23 million fewer Americans having health coverage by 2026.