Senate GOP, White House plan final, urgent blitz to pass health-care law

Aware that the next 14 days likely represent their last chance to salvage their flagging endeavor, President Trump, Vice President Pence and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) intend to single out individual senators and escalate a broad defense of the evolving proposal, according to Republicans familiar with their plans.

When Trump returns from Europe, he plans to counter the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office’s analysis of the legislation — which shows that 22 million fewer people would have insurance coverage by 2026 than under the current law — with figures and analysis from conservative groups and Republicans that show more benefits and less disruption, should the bill pass, according to a White House official familiar with the strategy…

McConnell is expected to place greater responsibility on Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) to pitch his controversial amendment that would allow insurers to offer insurance plans that don’t meet ACA requirements — provided they also offer some that do. McConnell could ask Cruz speak to GOP senators at lunch as soon as Tuesday, according to a person familiar with his strategy. Cruz has often spoken about his amendment in the Tuesday lunches, but the burden of building support for the bill could be left to the firebrand conservative.

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