GOP set to cripple Senate reconciliation with amendments

Senate Republicans will advance their campaign Thursday with floor speeches detailing why a provision to delay the “Cadillac tax” — a must-have for House liberals in the companion bill — could fall victim to the chamber’s parliamentary rules.

The provision is just one of many that Republicans expect to challenge. Under a strategy developed by Republican Policy Committee Chairman John Thune of South Dakota and Sen. Judd Gregg of New Hampshire, Republicans are plotting ways to strike major elements of the reconciliation bill, including changes to the special Medicaid deal for Nebraska and the carve-out for Florida senior citizens from Medicaid Advantage cuts. They are also going small bore, looking to strike seemingly minor provisions, including one that would fix language dealing with the employer mandate and the construction industry.

One senior Republican aide said staff and senators believe that as much as 40 percent of the measure can be killed through procedural objections.