The House of Representatives, led by Republican Speaker Paul Ryan (Wis.), voted Thursday to pass a bill to "repeal and replace" Obamacare. Many GOP members who voted for the American Health Care Act, however, reportedly didn't read the legislation. Further, the Congressional Budget Office didn't release an estimated cost of the bill before lawmakers voted to advance it to the Senate.
In 2009, before he was speaker, Ryan deplored Democrats use of the same tactics when they were trying to pass Obamacare. In an op-ed for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Ryan blasted Democrats for passing Obamacare through two committees before having read it and without knowing its cost:
Before members even had time to read the 1,000-page bill, it already has cleared two major House committees and is set to be fast tracked through Congress in the days and weeks ahead. Those members of Congress who voted for this bill already did so without knowing what the legislation costs. Before it's too late, let's take a closer look.
During a 2009 interview on MSNBC, anchor Touré Neblett read from Ryan's op-ed and asked if Republicans were being "genuine" in saying the Democrats were moving too quickly.
"Yes, I don't think we should pass bills that we haven't read, that we don't know what they cost," Ryan responded. "I don't think that's being effusive."
Paul Ryan in 2009: "I don't think we should pass bills that we haven't read that we don't know what they cost." #Awkwardpic.twitter.com/7AA9i1McqN
— Josh Jordan (@NumbersMuncher) May 4, 2017
Fast forward eight years and the very thing that Ryan railed against in 2009 is what his own party did to pass the AHCA.
House Republicans narrowly agreed to advance the revised AHCA out of the House and to the Senate. The CBO released a score for the original AHCA in March, but the bill that passed the House Thursday was much different from the previous version, thus its cost expected to be significantly different.
Also, multiple members of Ryan's party have admitted they didn't read the bill they voted for.
"I will fully admit ... I did not [read it], but I can also assure you my staff did," Rep. Chris Collins (R-N.Y.) told CNN's Wolf Blitzer.
And Rep. Thomas Garrett (R-Va.) said during an interview Thursday with MSNBC that Collins isn't alone.
"I don't think any individual has read the whole bill," Garrett said, according to CNBC. "That's why we have staff."