Watch CBSN Live

House Republican says "the Senate has failed the American people"

Health care setback

A senior member of the House Republican whip team on Wednesday blasted Senate Republicans for their failure to repeal and replace Obamacare.

"The Senate has failed the American people and abandoned voters who were promised that they would repeal and replace the disastrous Obamacare," said Rep. Dennis Ross, R-Florida, in a statement.

Ross, senior deputy majority whip, said that the House has already honored the GOP pledge to repeal and replace the 2010 health care law by passing its plan in early May.

"There is no need to sugar coat this: I'm very upset with the Senate," he said. "Senators have now wasted seven months doing nothing. We need Senators that want to help this President and keep their promises. The American people are sick of the excuses from Senators. I'm sick of the excuses. It's amazing to me that Senators are arguing that circumstances have changed, since all 52 of them voted for a full repeal just last year."

His comments appear to be the most critical from a House Republican yet. Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wisconsin, refrained from bashing his Senate counterparts on Tuesday.

Moderate Republicans kill Obamacare repeal option

Early last year, Congress sent a bill that would have repealed Obamacare to President Obama's desk, which he then vetoed. The 2015 bill, which would repeal Obamacare with a two-year delay to find a replacement plan, passed both chambers, though Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, who still serves in the upper chamber, was one of two Senate Republicans who opposed it.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, wants the Senate to vote on the measure again after two proposals he introduced failed to garner enough support over the last few weeks. The effort, however, is already doomed since three Republican senators signaled Tuesday that they would vote against a motion to proceed on the measure -- Susan Collins of Maine, Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska -- which effectively kills the bill.

Ross argued Wednesday that when premiums and deductibles skyrocket, the Senate will be to blame -- not the House or the president.

"My advice is that the Senate should stay in D.C. all of August, September, October and however long it takes to pass legislation that repeals and replaces Obamacare," he said. "If they don't repeal and replace Obamacare, like they promised and were voted to do, they are going back on their word and have some serious explaining to do when they go back home and face those who sent them to Washington to protect and help them. They will be held accountable."

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue