In the News: Blog

By Brett Coughlin

Sixteen conservative Republican senators dropped a bill this morning that would put the brakes on implementation of last year’s sweeping health care law — if their proposal ever gets a vote.

The bill – the Save Our States (SOS) Act – would block any further federal spending on implementation of the law. The bill was sponsored by Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Tex.).

“The reason for the bill is that we have 26 states that have to decide if they want to spend money up-front when you may have a bill that is ultimately determined to be unconstitutional,” Hutchison told POLITICO. The bill is basically a legislative injunction on implementing the law, so it could be referred to both the Finance and the Judiciary committees, Senate aides said.

Along with Hutchison, SOS is co-sponsored by Sens. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), Dan Coats (R-Ind.), Tom Coburn (R-Okla.), John Cornyn (R-Texas), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), John Ensign (R-Nev.), James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Mike Johanns (R-Neb.), Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.), Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), James Risch (R-Idaho), Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) and Roger Wicker (R-Miss.).

Early handicapping of the bill, by a long-time Republican lobbyist who asked to speak on background, suggests the bill has a very slim of even getting an up-or-down vote in committee or on the Senate floor.

The chances are probably less than 10 percent, the lobbyist said.

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