In fiery Senate floor speech, Bernie Sanders savages Republicans for their secretive health care bill

"Every Republican should be embarrassed by this": Bernie Sanders pummels GOP hypocrisy on health care bill scheming

By Matthew Rozsa

Staff Writer

Published June 20, 2017 4:08PM (EDT)

 (AP Photo/Mel Evans) (AP)
(AP Photo/Mel Evans) (AP)

The Senate Republican leadership's approach to rewriting the American Health Care Act has been so secretive that not only have Democrats condemned them, but many of their fellow Republicans have done likewise.

Of course, nothing can compare to the rage that poured out from the Senate's most famous capital 'i' Independent, Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont.

"It should tell every American, whether you are a Democrat, a Republican or an Independent, whether you’re conservative or progressive. It should tell you something that major, major legislation is being written at this moment, and most Republicans don’t have a clue as to what’s in that legislation, let alone Democrats, let alone the average American," Sanders declared from the Senate floor.

He then added, "So I say to the Republican leadership, what are you afraid of? Bring that bill out."

As the former 2016 presidential candidate noted, because there have been no public hearings on the impact of the health care bill, Americans cannot realistically have a sense of what impact it will have on their lives.

"And I should think that every Republican should be embarrassed by this, and I know that many of them are embarrassed by it," Sanders pointed out.

Ironically enough, Sanders' words — though characteristically fiery and eloquent — echo those issued from a Republican congressman back in 2010. This individual also argued that "it's simply wrong for legislation that'll affect 100% of the American people to be negotiated behind closed doors."

His name was Mike Pence and, now that he's vice president, he is expected to back whatever bill the Senate Republicans ultimately produce.

By Matthew Rozsa

Matthew Rozsa is a staff writer at Salon. He received a Master's Degree in History from Rutgers-Newark in 2012 and was awarded a science journalism fellowship from the Metcalf Institute in 2022.

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