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No Women Senators Are Working on the Health-Care Bill

Republican Senator Susan Collins shouldn’t be a part of the working group, regardless of her expertise working on health care and insurance coverage.

Photo: Pete Marovich/Bloomberg by way of Getty Images

Last week, the Republicans passed a health-care bill that, though it says insurance coverage suppliers can’t discriminate based mostly on gender, has the potential to disproportionately affect women. The invoice is now beneath evaluate in the Senate, the place senators are “starting from scratch,” according to the New York Times. The group working on the invoice is made up of 13 senators whose ideology runs from ultraconservative to average, however critics have observed an necessary element: It doesn’t embrace a single lady.

“The leaders have the right to choose whomever they wish,” Republican Senator Susan Collins — considered one of the 21 women at present serving in the Senate — told the Times on Monday. “It doesn’t mean that I’m not going to work on health care.” Collins opposed the American Health Care Act as a result of she thought too many individuals would lose protection beneath it; she and Senator Bill Cassidy of Louisiana launched their own health-care bill in January that’s largely been ignored by GOP management.

“I’ve worked on health care for many years,” Collins continued. “I spent five years in state government overseeing the Bureau of Insurance many years ago, and I think I can bring some experience to the debate that will be helpful.”

Other Democratic women senators have been far more direct. “It’s offensive and it’s troubling that there are no women [in the group],” Senator Kirsten Gillibrand said on The View. “Women do have a lot to lose.” Others have spoken out on social media:

The Senate’s model of the invoice isn’t more likely to be launched — a lot much less voted on — for a minimum of a few months. Until then, we’ll simply should marvel how the 13 males in cost really feel about maternity coverage.

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