Try 1 month for 99¢

Sen. Deb Fischer said Thursday she will vote yes on a motion to proceed with Senate consideration of a Republican health care plan that would rewrite or replace the Affordable Care Act.

"I believe it is time to act," the Nebraska Republican said during a telephone conference call from Washington.

At least two Republican senators have signaled their opposition to a motion to bring up a revised GOP proposal to overhaul Obamacare for Senate consideration. Three Republican opponents would represent enough GOP opposition to ultimately block enactment of a replacement bill.

Fischer said she is willing to stay in Washington through August to work on health care and other legislation. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell already has canceled the first two weeks of the traditional month-long August recess.

"We need to continue to work on a health care solution," Fischer said, "and things are moving in the right direction."

A replacement plan needs to feature "more affordability and more certainty," she said.

Fischer said she is considering the latest proposal authored by Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, which would allow insurers to sell cheaper and more-austere plans that do not comply with ACA coverage requirements.

"I think it would bring down the cost of policies," she said, but she wants to take "a deeper look" at the proposal that surfaced Thursday.

Proposed changes in the Medicaid program would be "less acute" in Nebraska than in states that expanded Medicaid coverage under provisions in Obamacare, Fischer said.

"My goal is to strengthen Medicaid (to) meet the needs of those most vulnerable in our society," she said, specifically including "children, mothers, the disabled and the frail."

Subscribe to Breaking News

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

On other topics, Fischer said special Justice Department counsel Robert Mueller and the Senate Intelligence Committee should be given time to proceed with their investigations of possible Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

"I would say, yes, there was a move by Russia to influence the mindset of American voters," Fischer said, but there has been no indication that the election process itself was compromised.

Asked about the action of Donald Trump Jr., in meeting with a Russian lawyer who apparently promised to share damaging information about Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, Fischer said: "I would not have done what he did."

Asked about President Trump's characterization of the Russia investigations as a witch hunt, Fischer said: "I'm not going to judge what the president says."

Reach the writer at 402-473-7248 or

On Twitter @LJSDon.


Political reporter

Don Walton, a Husker and Yankee fan, is a longtime Journal Star political and government reporter.

Load comments