In Speaker Paul Ryan’s frenzied rush to shove Zombie Trumpcare through the House, he decided to forego getting a Congressional Budget Office score of the legislation, because the more information members had about the bill the harder it would be for them to vote for it. But because he didn’t do that, the bill has not yet been sent on to the Senate, and there’s a chance that the House will have to tweak the bill again and revote on it after the new CBO score is released early next week.
That’s because the provisions they added to sweeten the deal for “moderates” could have changed the overall costs and savings in the bill—it has to save at least $2 billion to comply with the Senate’s rules for considering it under budget reconciliation, the tool that allows it to pass with a simple majority of 51 votes. It’s possible that Ryan’s team took that under consideration while drafting the changes, but given Ryan’s history with making numbers actually work, don’t count on it. Which is probably why he didn’t tell anyone else that he wasn’t sending the bill to the Senate and that this problem—and a revote—might come back to bite all their asses.
Ryan is downplaying the whole thing, but still not answering why he didn’t make what was going on clear to all his members.
“We’re moving [the bill] over to the Senate probably in a couple weeks,” Ryan told conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt.
Ryan said he was confident that the prospect of having to revisit the legislation, known as the American Health Care Act, was a “technical nonissue” that likely would be cleared up when the Congressional Budget Office releases its analysis of the bill, expected next week. […]
Ryan said the House is holding onto the health care bill until it receives the CBO score “out of an abundance of caution.”
More like out of an abundance of not wanting to be further embarrassed by headlines saying that the Senate had to refuse the bill because Ryan fucked it up after that big premature celebration party he had with Trump in the White House Rose Garden. He also needs to project the idea that this is not a big deal to calm jittery nerves of those two-dozen members who will not want to have to take a second vote on this horrific piece of legislation.