Dems Finding New Ways To Stop GOP From Steamrolling Secret Healthcare Bill

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The minority power in Congress rarely has the power to stop anything, depending on how many votes they’re short.

This has been both a good and bad thing. It has prevented some heinous legislation from passing, but also been ineffective against other bills. Without the necessary votes to command a majority, the party out of power in Congress largely must rely on procedural techniques to put a hold on something big — like the “repeal and replace Obamacare” effort from Republicans. And in the case of a measure being discussed by one party, but not debated by both, like the GOP’s secret healthcare bill, it can be a last resort.

One such maneuver is to oppose “unanimous consent” requests in the Senate. A request for unanimous consent is a lot like the new rule in major league baseball: You can now walk a batter without actually having to throw a pitch. A consent request speeds things up in the normally slow-moving deliberative body. According to an aide, Senate Democrats will begin opposing all consent requests starting Monday night. Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer weighed in:

If Republicans won’t relent and debate their healthcare bill in the open for the American people to see, then they shouldn’t expect business as usual in the Senate. [The GOP is] drafting this bill in secret because they’re ashamed of it, plain and simple.

One Twitter user had an idea that went further:

Ezra Levin, the author of the Indivisible guide to resisting Trump:

The Democrats have options available to them to stop the GOP from forcing through their secret bill. Let’s hope Schumer and Company have the intestinal fortitude to do it.

Featured image via Wikimedia Commons

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