“Nuclear-Grade Bonkers”: Senator Slams “Skinny Repeal” Bill in Powerful Floor Speech

Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., compares the latest repeal bill to “healthcare system arson.”

Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call/AP

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.

After Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) unveiled his eight-page “skinny repeal” health care bill late Thursday night —a last-ditch effort to gut parts of the Affordable Care Act—Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) took to the Senate floor to lambast the effort as “arson.” 

“This bill is lighting the American healthcare system on fire with intentionality,” Murphy said of the legislation, now known as the “Health Care Freedom Act.” It would eliminate Obamacare’s individual mandate and employer requirements to offer workers health insurance, and block funding for abortion providers like Planned Parenthood for one year. 

The Congressional Budget Office estimated on Thursday night that 15 million more people would lose health insurance under the law next year, compared to the current law, and premiums would spike 20 percent.

“To use freedom at its center—there’s freedom in this bill. There’s the freedom to go bankrupt,” Murphy added. “There’s the freedom to get sick and not be able to find a doctor. There’s freedom in this bill to die early. That’s not hyperbole, guys. That’s what happens when over night 16 million people lose insurance.”

Watch the rest of Murphy’s speech on the Senate floor below:


Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

payment methods

We Recommend