Spicer: Democrats Have Chosen to Exclude Themselves From Senate Healthcare Bill

By Annabel Scott | June 20, 2017 | 5:11 PM EDT

White House press secretary Sean Spicer briefs reporters. (Screengrab: White House)

(CNSNews.com) – Democrats should not be criticizing the GOP healthcare bill after making it clear that they did not want to engage in repealing and replacing Obamacare, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters at a press briefing on Tuesday.

Asked whether Senate Republicans are shoving the healthcare bill down Democrats’ throats,

 Spicer pointed to two comments by Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.).

“Look at what Senator Schumer said, both in February to MoveOn.org, that no Democrat is going to go near this, and what he said in a letter on May 9 – he said that no Democrats would be part of an effort that would repeal Obamacare,” he said.

“They have chosen to … not make themselves part of this process.”

The healthcare bill, which has passed the House and is now being worked on by Republican Senators, needs 51 votes for passage before it can be signed into law by President Trump.

Many Democratic lawmakers are complaining that the Senate Republicans lack transparency when it comes to the bill.

“Let’s not mistake ourselves with how they [Senate Democrats] approached this thing. Their leader, Senator Schumer, made it very clear on at least two separate occasions that they didn’t want to be part of this process. They didn’t want to repeal and replace Obamacare. They were happy with Obamacare,” said Spicer.

“We believe Obamacare is failing. We want a better system for the American people. A patient-centered healthcare system that brings down costs and gives more stability to people. That’s it.”

Spicer said that instead of pointing fingers at Republican lawmakers, Democrats should look closer to home.

“They … made it very clear that they didn’t not want to engage in this process. So, to turn around now and to second guess – that’s something they should take up with their own leader.”

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