Fifth Republican Jumps Ship On Healthcare Bill

REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

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Phillip Stucky Political Reporter
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Republican Sen. Dean Heller of Nevada announced Friday that he is officially opposed to the Republican healthcare plan.

Heller joins Sens. Mike Lee of Utah, Ted Cruz of Texas, Rand Paul of Kentucky and Ron Johnson of Wisconsin who announced that they didn’t support the current iteration of the plan Thursday shortly after it was published.

“I’m announcing today that in this form I will not support it,” Heller said during a press conference. “It’s going to be very difficult to get me to a yes.”

Heller is up for reelection in the 2018 campaign year. He didn’t win his first election by a commanding margin, and he only gained 45.9 percent of the vote compared to his opponent’s 44.7 percent in the 2012 race.

The senator asserted that he wanted to include language that would “protect Medicaid expansion in states” in order for him to support the measure.

Republicans can only afford two defections to pass the bill, according to a statistics site.

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