N.C. congressman among those pushing Senate to bypass normal rules

Susan Crabtree of the Washington Examiner details a proposal to ditch U.S. Senate rules that block Republicans’ health care agenda.

Conservative House Republicans are ratcheting up the pressure on House and Senate GOP leaders to go back to the drawing board and write a more expansive Obamacare replacement overhaul bill and ditch the usual Senate rules that limit what Republicans can do.

Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., is citing a 1964 precedent from the passage of the Civil Rights Act and a recent Supreme Court ruling to urge his Senate colleagues to overturn Senate Parliamentarian Elizabeth MacDonough’s findings if she rejects a broader bill that includes provisions unraveling the insurance mandate and other big parts of Obamacare that conservatives want to do away with.

“It think it’s well within the power of the chair to overrule the parliamentarian if she doesn’t look at that in a way that has a budgetary impact,” Meadows, who chairs the conservative Freedom Caucus, told the Washington Examiner.

Meadows pointed to historic precedent – when Vice President Hubert Humphrey in 1964 overruled the parliamentarian to overcome segregationist opposition to the law among Congressional leaders.

More recently, he said, the Supreme Court in 2015 in King v. Burwell determined that the bill could not be broken up with parts of it, such as tax credits, jettisoned. The Congressional Budget Office score, released Monday, will help Republican make the argument that the entire bill is budget-related, he said.

“This is not setting a new precedent … I see it as a much more strategic way to hopefully accomplish what the American people want,” he said.

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