I know that conference is where a lot of legislation is hashed out but it was fucking ridiculous to try and create an entire healthcare bill from nothing that was passed by wither chamber. The House version was a piece of shit because they felt the need to pass SOMETHING and the Senate… well, the Senate. From this article: Senate Rejects Slimmed-Down Obamacare Repeal as McCain Votes No.
What an absolute shitshow.
“the skeletal plan was just a vehicle to permit negotiations with the House” – In other words, they tried to pass a bill that they did not want to pass.
“The new, eight-page Senate bill, called the Health Care Freedom Act, was unveiled just hours before the vote” – So they wanted senators to upend the healthcare system with a plan they didn’t want passed that no one had time to read, and leave it to a conference committee which generally does its business in private. You also can’t add anything new into a conference report and to change this rule in the Senate requires 60 votes. So even going to conference is an open-ended lottery in terms of what the final product could have been.
And then, from the same article, presented without comment:
“Before rolling out the new legislation, Senate leaders had to deal with a rebellion from Republican senators who demanded ironclad assurances that the legislation would never become law.”
“Mr. McCain and Senators Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Ron Johnson of Wisconsin insisted that House leaders promise that the bill would not be enacted.”
“I’m not going to vote for a bill that is terrible policy and horrible politics just because we have to get something done,” Mr. Graham said at a news conference… Mr. Graham eventually voted for the measure”
“Republican senators found themselves in the strange position of hoping their bill would never be approved by the House.”
“[Senator] Rounds, who built a successful insurance business in his home state, said he was concerned that “the markets may collapse” if the Senate bill ever took effect.”
“Even some senators who voted for the measure Friday conceded that its enactment could have been disastrous.”