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Senator Rand Paul Confirms His Graham/Cassidy Demands

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Senator Rand Paul confirmed Big League Politics’ previous report of his asks for a “yes” vote on the Graham/Cassidy healthcare bill in a press conference on Monday afternoon.

Earlier in the day, the Kentucky senator confirmed that the latest revisions to the bill are not enough to gain his approval. The additions to the bill, added late Sunday evening, would add billions of dollars for states and fewer coverage requirements.

The primary demand that Senator Paul has is reducing the $1 trillion spending.

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As we previously confirmed, multiple conversations took place over the weekend between Senator paul, President Tump, and Vice President Mike Pence. Additionally, we can report that everyone involved in those talks is open to a deal and changes to the bill. The question that remains is if the authors of the bill and senate leaders will be open to the changes.

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“Senator Paul has said Graham/Cassidy spends too much, doesn’t fix enough regulations, and does not allow the market to help bring inexpensive insurance to millions more Americans. Through the changes in the bill he is proposing, as well as executive actions that could be taken today by the Trump administration, he believes these issues can be resolved,” Senator Paul’s Chief Strategist Doug Stafford told Big League Politics. “He is working with the White House currently to see if they can be addressed, speaking directly with President Trump and Vice President Pence multiple times in the past few days.”

Senator Paul has repeatedly referred to the bill as “Amnesty for Obamacare” or “Grahamnesty,” claiming that it is not an actual repeal.

“Graham/Cassidy keeps and redistributes/spends over a trillion dollars. My promise to the voters was to repeal Obamacare — not block grant and keep Obamacare,” Senator Paul said in his list of asks which was provided to BLP. “If Obamacare were truly repealed, this entire trillion dollars would not be spent. This is the primary obstacle to my support, and only a significant reassessment of this trillion-dollar spending regime would get my support.”

The senator’s asks also include the default on Obamacare regulations being that they are waived so states have to opt into ACA regulations and an executive expansion of the groups that are eligible to become a health association.

When asked about Senator Ted Cruz opposing the bill, after he campaigned as a Liberty Republican in 2016, a source close to the negotiations told Big League Politics that he isn’t actually opposing the bill. The source explained that he has been saying that they do not yet have his vote, but there is a big difference between that and outright opposition. The source added that Cruz has not done anything other than offer support of the ill privately until yesterday, when it looked as though Senator Paul may succeed in killing it.

Cruz has been absent on this issue publicly and privately until the 11th hour.

Congress

He Found His Spine: Vulnerable Senator Cory Gardner Vows to Support Trump’s SCOTUS Nominee

Gardner found his backbone.

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Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO) has often been at odds with the Trump movement, being a favorite of the GOP establishment’s Senate Leadership Fund.

This is why his recent declaration that he will be supporting President Donald Trump’s choice to succeed the deceased Ruth Bader Ginsburg is so surprising. He made the announcement in a Twitter post on Monday.

“When a President exercises constitutional authority to nominate a judge for the Supreme Court vacancy, the Senate must decide how to best fulfill its constitutional duty of advice and consent,” Gardner said in his official statement.

“I have and will continue to support judicial nominees who will protect the Constitution, not legislate from the bench, and uphold the law. Should a qualified nominee who meets this criteria be put forward, I will vote to confirm,” he added.

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The official statement can be seen here:

The president’s pick for the Supreme Court will certainly fit Gardner’s criteria. Trump has announced that he will be appointing a woman to the bench.

One top contender – Amy Comey Barrett – recently made a trip to the White House, as Big League Politics has reported:

Judge Amy Coney Barrett visited the White House on Monday, as President Donald Trump zeroes in on selecting a nominee to fill the vacant seat on the US Supreme Court.

Barrett is reportedly a front-runner for the judicial nomination. She’s a generally conservative judge, with a staunch pro-life record. Her track record on immigration law issues is generally conservative.

Barrett currently serves as a circuit judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has advised President Trump that she is his preferred candidate for the seat on the court.

President Trump had confirmed that he plans to nominate a woman to fill the seat of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, who died of complications from pancreatic cancer on Friday.

Democrats have launched a full-fledged fit urging President Trump to give them a break and decline to nominate a conservative justice, but they won’t be so lucky. Republican Senators and President Trump have rallied around the notion of appointing a justice before the November election, fulfilling their constitutional responsibilities.

Trump confirmed that he would be revealing the identity of his judicial nominee on Friday or Saturday, taking a few extra days to vet candidates. Florida Judge Barbara Lagoa is reportedly another candidate being considered for the nomination.

It’ll be inherently harder for incensed, power-thirsty Democrats to attack a female judicial candidate. Maybe they’ll alienate swing female voters through waging a scorched earth campaign to block the confirmation of Barrett, who is a mother of seven.

The Republicans have a great opportunity to score a major political victory and really stick it to the extreme Left with this expedited SCOTUS confirmation. The fact that a moderate like Gardner is on board is a great sign that the confirmation is likely to occur before November’s election.

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