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Sen. Rob Portman voices ‘real concerns’ with bill’s Medicaid cuts

One reason Senate Republicans will not find it easy to pass their health-care bill is the legislation has to please both conservatives like Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) and moderates like Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio.).

Portman is the leader of a group of Republican senators from states that expanded Medicaid under Obamacare.

He said Thursday he has “real concerns” with how the new GOP proposal treats Medicaid — especially provisions of the bill that “impact drug treatment at a time when Ohio is facing an opioid epidemic.”

Here’s his full statement:

As I’ve said previously, the Affordable Care Act is not working for many Ohio families and small businesses.  My goal is to create a more workable system that lowers the cost of coverage, provides access to quality care, and protects the most vulnerable in our society.  There are some promising changes to reduce premiums in the individual insurance market, but I continue to have real concerns about the Medicaid policies in this bill, especially those that impact drug treatment at a time when Ohio is facing an opioid epidemic.I look forward to examining this new proposal carefully and reviewing the analysis by the Congressional Budget Office when it is available.  If the final legislation is good for Ohio, I will support it.  If not, I will oppose it.  As this process moves forward, I will continue to work to protect Ohio’s interests and ensure that our health care system works better for all Ohioans.
GOP health-care bill: The latest news and reactions

Senate Republicans are set to release a health-care bill that would curtail federal Medicaid funding, repeal taxes on the wealthy and eliminate funding for Planned Parenthood as part of an effort to fulfill a years-long promise to undo Barack Obama’s signature health-care law.

Follow along for the latest updates throughout the day, and check out the current whip count here.