- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Wednesday pledged that work would continue on Republicans’ Obamacare repeal efforts, a day after he was forced to delay action on a Senate bill without enough support in his conference to pass it.

“We know that we cannot afford to delay on this issue,” Mr. McConnell said on the Senate floor, calling the status quo “unacceptable.”

“Obamacare is a direct assault on the middle class,” he said. “It’s getting worse, and we have to act to finally move beyond its failures.”

He said it’s unfortunate Democrats haven’t done more to help fix the law since its passage in 2010, and that they continue to have an “unserious attitude” about the issue.

Senate Minority Whip Richard J. Durbin, Illinois Democrat, reiterated Democrats’ demand that Republicans drop their repeal efforts before they negotiate on a bipartisan basis.

“I’ve talked to some Republican senators … and they want to sit down and talk,” Mr. Durbin said soon after Mr. McConnell spoke.

Mr. McConnell had announced Tuesday he was putting off consideration of the Senate’s bill to roll back parts of Obamacare, after Republicans had hoped for action on the measure before they break for the July 4th holiday.

Close to a dozen Republican senators have said they can’t support the measure in its current form. Conservative members have said it doesn’t do enough to fully repeal the law, while moderates have expressed concerns with how the expanded Medicaid rolls under Obamacare would be dealt with in the new legislation.

Republicans control 52 of 100 seats in the Senate, and can afford only two defections to pass the bill under fast-track rules they’re using to work around a potential Democratic filibuster.

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