Republicans in the White House and in Congress are looking into side deals to pull in votes for the Senate's Obamacare repeal and replacement bill after the Congressional Budget Office showed more savings than the GOP predicted, according to Politico.
The Senate has around $188 billion in savings to consider handing out, Politico reported, that could potentially be used to provide more money for health savings accounts, which could earn the approval of Sens. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and Mike Lee, R-Utah.
"We are still working with leadership to change the base bill," an aide to Lee said in Politico.
Lee may require more changes in order to earn his vote. Along with Cruz and others, Lee wants to repeal and replace as much of Obamacare as possible, according to Politico.
Senators in Medicaid expansion states are looking to get leaders onboard to add money to Medicaid and to fight drug addiction. Other Republicans have other ideas for the savings. "It wouldn't be a bad thing if we put the money toward deficit reduction," Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., told Politico.
Tuesday will be "all about side deals," a Senate aide told Politico. Another source said Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is already in discussions for deals.
"There's no one-size-fits-all to getting these people on board. Each of them wants different things and we have to figure out if there is a path," one White House official told Politico.
Conservatives could reject any changes to the bill that are made to win votes from moderates, Politico reported.
McConnell has said a vote is a must for this week, but some White House officials worry that the votes for the bill, as it is, are not there.
"You could make an argument for delaying it if you could get a better policy, but this is the best we could do to satisfy all the different aspects of our conferences," Thune added, according to Politico.
One benefit of the potential Obamacare repeal is that healthcare stocks have improved. A surge after the Senate bill was revealed made healthcare stocks the best-performing sector of the year so far, according to CBS News.
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