Senate Democrats in the last 24 hours have launched a furious volley of attacks against their colleagues across the aisle ahead of the vote Tuesday on whether to proceed with the GOP health care bill that would dismantle the Affordable Care Act.
The Democrats hope Twitter is their Agincourt and tweets their arrows.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein has tweeted 10 times in the last 17 hours, all about the pending health care vote.
“Make no mistake, a ‘yes’ vote on health care is an endorsement of the most indefensible process on a major bill I’ve seen in 24 years,” the California Democrat tweeted late Monday.
Make no mistake, a ‘yes’ vote on health care is an endorsement of the most indefensible process on a major bill I’ve seen in 24 years.
Her California colleague, freshman Sen. Kamala Harris, was more blunt, citing the Congressional Budget Office report last week that concluded 32 million fewer Americans would have health insurance by 2026 if Obamacare were repealed without a follow-up replacement plan.
Repeal: 32 million lose coverage
Repeal and replace: 23 million lose coverage
Both are unacceptable.
Senate Democrats believe Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and others in the Republican Senate brass have shrouded the process to move ahead with the bill in secrecy.
Missouri’s Claire McCaskill said it was “beyond weird” to vote on a proposal when McConnell and others in the GOP leadership “won’t even tell us what proposal we are voting on!”
And Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin said that five hours out, Democrats still had no idea what bill they were voting to proceed on.
It is beyond weird that we have a big vote today but once again wrapped in secrecy. They won’t even tell us what proposal we are voting on!
In about 5 hours, we vote on a bill to repeal health care for 22-32 million Americans. And we still haven’t seen the bill.
Some Democrats stayed at the Capitol late Monday night and arrived early this morning to deliver speeches on the floor deriding the process, tweeting out the Facebook Live streams of their remarks.
Wisconsin Sen. Tammy Baldwin tweeted out the Facebook Live stream for her speech last night against the “partisan health care repeal effort,” then blasting out a 17-tweet thread laying out the risks to some of her constituents.
LIVE: On the Senate floor to speak out against the partisan health care repeal effort. Watch here: https://t.co/G50M2IoGrS
Connecticut Sen. Chris Murphy lobbed his characteristic snark at a White House tweet that quoted President Donald Trump saying Obamacare has “wreaked havoc on the lives of innocent hardworking Americans” over the last seven years.
For millions of sick and disabled Americans, having insurance for the first time in their lives has been truly nightmarish. https://t.co/6I624NY3pR
Sen. Patty Murray, the ranking member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, pleaded last night for Americans to flood their lawmakers’ voicemails with complaints about the GOP health plan.
Ramp up the pressure in these last few hours—keep calling, tweeting, double down on your advocacy, and keep making your voices heard.
Harris echoed that sentiment Tuesday morning:
Every action you’ve taken has helped keep the GOP from taking health care from millions. Today is an important day, we can’t let up now.
Others tailored the messages to their home constituents.
Sen. Bob Menendez told his Twitter followers about the ramifications of deep cuts to Medicaid in his state that could result from the eventual passage of the Senate bill.
— Senator Bob Menendez (@SenatorMenendez) July 25, 2017
Republicans, on the other hand, have been mostly mum.
Sen. Rand Paul plugged his Fox News interview Tuesday morning, the only reference to the vote on a Senate Republican’s Twitter so far Tuesday.
McConnell reaffirmed his determination to repeal Obamacare at all costs in a tweet Monday.
Tomorrow, I will keep my commitment to vote to move beyond the failures of #Obamacare. I will vote yes on the motion to proceed.
— Leader McConnell (@SenateMajLdr) July 24, 2017
On his personal Twitter page Tuesday, President Donald Trump said would be “a very interesting day” for health care and that “[the] Dems are obstructionists but the Republicans can have a great victory for the people!”
This will be a very interesting day for HealthCare.The Dems are obstructionists but the Republicans can have a great victory for the people!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017
Republican senators will meet at 12:45 p.m. for their weekly lunch, where McConnell and others will give their final pitches to their colleagues on the fence, a list that includes Sens. Rob Portman, Lisa Murkowski, Mike Lee, Ron Johnson, and Dean Heller, among others.
The vote to proceed will be cast around 2:15 p.m.