Charles E Schumer

Democrats Want to Seize Populism From Trump
Prepare their agenda with a new focus on antitrust policy

Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi will be in Berryville, Va., for Monday afternoon’s rollout. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

When congressional Democrats unveil their “better deal” agenda Monday afternoon, they will be trying to reclaim the populist mantle from President Donald Trump.

Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer says the shift in messaging is about a commitment to reorienting the function of government.

Photos of the Week: A Health Care Bill Stalemate Hits D.C. Amid Heat Wave
The week of July 17 as captured by Roll Call’s photographers

On Monday, U.S. Capitol Police officers prepare to arrest several demonstrators protesting the GOP health care legislation in the atrium of the Hart Senate Office Building. Dozens of protesters chanted during the demonstration before police cleared the atrium. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

By BILL CLARK and TOM WILLIAMS

The week of July 17 began with health care negotiations in the Senate, amid protests in the hallways of the Senate office buildings, and is coming to an end with an essentially stalled process on a new health care bill in the chamber. The Republican effort to repeal and replace President Barack Obama’s signature law continued to be the focus of Congress watchers on the Hill this week.

Amid Trump’s Shifting Health Care Stances, a Recurring Infatuation
President keeps bringing up letting 2010 law fail

President Donald Trump have often said Democratic leaders like Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., will eventually come to him to make a deal on health care. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

President Donald Trump on Wednesday again appeared to change his stance on just which path he wants Republican senators to take on health care. But he has long been infatuated with the notion of House and Senate Democratic leaders asking — begging, even — for his help on health care.

This week, the president and his aides have been posturing to put that very scenario in play, even as his own party attempts to resurrect a measure that would repeal most of and partially replace the 2010 health care law in one swoop.

Trump Dined on Rib-Eye, Cobbler With ‘Yes’ Votes as Health Care Bill Crumbled
White House defends dinner as ‘strategy session’ with vote-wranglers

President Donald Trump met Monday night with senators who were already expected to support the since-derailed Republican health care legislation. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

As the Senate Republican health care bill began taking on water, President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence dined on “rosemary-grilled” rib-eye steaks and “farm stand” peach cobbler with seven senators who were expected to support the legislation.

There was Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn of Texas, a vocal proponent of the legislation, who was involved in writing it and led the effort to wrangle the necessary votes. The same was true of his fellow GOP leaders present, Sens. John Thune of South Dakota and Roy Blunt of Missouri. All were sure to vote for the bill.

On Health Care, Where Do Republicans Go Now?
 

Critics From All Sides Hammer McConnell
Politicians and pundits criticize majority leader’s legislative tactics

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellhas come under criticism from all sides after he was forced to scuttle the GOP repeal-and-replace bill. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is facing mounting criticism from politicians and pundits on both sides of the aisle after the collapse of his chamber’s Republican health care legislation.

Before the bill was pulled Monday night, Sen. Ron Johnson told a local newspaper that McConnell’s conflicting statements to different members of his caucus were a “significant breach of trust.”

Mitch McConnell’s Plan B on Health Care Appears Dead
Murkowski joins Collins and Capito to oppose proceeding on measure

Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowskisays she would vote against the current GOP repeal-only plan, giving opponents the necessary votes to block the measure. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell does not have the votes necessary to pass a bill to repeal portions of the 2010 health care law, the Kentucky Republican’s “Plan B” following the failure of the GOP plan to overhaul the U.S. health insurance markets.

Three Republican senators — Maine’s Susan Collins, West Virginia’s Shelley Moore Capito and Alaska’s Lisa Murkowski — have all stated their intentions to vote against a procedural motion that would allow McConnell to bring up a 2015 measure that would end the law’s Medicaid expansion and repeal other portions of it starting in two years.

Latest GOP Leadership Health Care Plan Bleeding Support
Some senators have doubts about repeal-only proposal

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell still appears to be short of the votes to get to a health care measure. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Senate Republican leaders continued to push their strategy to repeal the 2010 health care law, leaning on support from the White House even as their rank and file continued to express doubts about such an approach. 

“I regret that the effort to repeal and immediately replace the failures of Obamacare will not be successful,” Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said in his opening remarks on the Senate floor Tuesday morning. The Kentucky Republican wants his colleagues to vote soon on a procedural motion to get to the House-passed health care legislation so he can offer an amendment modeled on legislation Congress passed in 2015 to repeal the 2010 law.

Analysis: GOP Senate Health Care Effort at Standstill
McConnell’s plan to resurrect 2015 Obamacare repeal bill expected to fail

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell plans to resurrect a health care bill that President Barrack Obama vetoed in 2015. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell lacks the Republican support needed to advance a bill to overhaul the U.S. health insurance system and will instead try hold a vote on a separate measure to repeal the 2010 health care law that Congress passed in 2015 and former President Barack Obama vetoed.

“Regretfully, it is now apparent that the effort to repeal and immediately replace the failure of Obamacare will not be successful,” McConnell said in a statement late Monday. “In the coming days, the Senate will vote to take up the House bill with the first amendment in order being what a majority of the Senate has already supported in 2015 and that was vetoed by then-President Obama: a repeal of Obamacare with a two-year delay to provide for a stable transition period to a patient-centered health care system that gives Americans access to quality, affordable care.”

McCain Absence Gives GOP More Time to Win — Or Lose — Health Care Votes
Schedule change could put focus back on Russia

With Sen. John McCain recuperating at home in Arizona from surgery, Senate GOP leaders are delaying consideration of the health care bill. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

That Sen. John McCain’s absence from the Capitol this week led Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to delay consideration of a bill to roll back the 2010 health care law is a sign of just how narrow the vote margin might be.

And it could bring the focus back to the chamber’s various Russia investigations.