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House Republicans rail on Senate GOP for torpedoing health care
30 July 2017, 06:43 | Christie Tate
House Republicans rail on Senate GOP for torpedoing health care
Sen. Susan Collins of ME, another of the three Republicans to vote against the GOP plan (Alaska's Lisa Murkowski was the other), said she is pleased that Sen.
"Republicans in the Senate will NEVER win if they don't go to a 51 vote majority NOW", Trump tweeted. The outcome may spell doom for the party's seven-year quest to gut a 2010 law that was Democratic former President Barack Obama's signature domestic policy achievement.
The new, watered down repeal attempt was created to target individual aspects of the 2010 Affordable Care Act - known as Obamacare - such as the requirement that everyone must get health insurance or face a fine.
McCain had not stated before the vote which way he would go in Friday's vote.
"This is just the beginning", Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) told the Times. He told the Senate it's time to move on.
(AP Photo/Cliff Owen) Senator Lisa Murkowski, an Alaska Republican, passes reporters as she leaves the Senate chamber after voting "no" on a a measure to repeal parts of former United States president Barack Obama's health care law.
Republican lawmakers have struggled to honor their biggest campaign promise to repeal the Affordable Care Act.
The amendment was a political tactic created to make Democrats vote against a policy popular with their base. "It is now time to return to regular order with input from all of our members - Republicans and Democrats - and bring a bill to the floor of the Senate for amendment and debate".
"The so-called "skinny" bill is a toxic prescription that would make matters worse", said AMA President David Barbe. Communications Workers of America President Chris Shelton also thanked the three defecting senators for saving millions from losing insurance.
So senators, who cast hundreds of votes each year, faced the prospect of voting for a bill that they really, really didn't want to become law.
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"The reality, however, is that repealing and replacing Obamacare still ultimately requires the Senate to produce 51 votes for an actual plan", he said.
The motion to proceed to debate had historically been an automatic vote according to Senate norms, and one that didn't indicate which way a senator might vote on the final proposal.
"Not sufficient", said Sen.
House Speaker Paul Ryan, who spent weeks urging his members to hold their fire and give Senate Republicans some space to get a health care deal, didn't hide his frustration at a closed-door meeting in the Capitol basement on Friday. While Obama's law extended coverage to some 20 million people, nonpartisan analyses estimate the GOP proposals would make millions more uninsured. John McCain came as a shock to many - as Republicans inside the chamber gasped and Democrats clapped and offered muted, senatorial cheers.
Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., initially said "not yet" when asked if he was ready to vote for the scaled-back Senate bill.
Republicans seem increasingly likely to try to pass a slimmed-down bill that would repeal only a small number of the existing health law's provisions.
"If they're going to quit, well then by golly, maybe they ought to start at the top with Mitch McConnell leaving his position and letting somebody new, somebody bold, somebody conservative take the reins", Brooks said on CNN.
"If you look at competitive districts, swing districts, or districts where Republicans could face primary challenges, this is something that will be a potent electoral issue", Republican pollster Chris Wilson said of his party's health care failure. "We thought they deserved better ..."
The idea of expanding Medicare has been rejected by Republican leaders because they hope to roll back, not expand the federal government's role in health care.
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Here's Why McCain Voted Against 'Skinny' Obamacare Repeal Bill
He said that he wanted assurances from House Speaker Paul Ryan that the legislation would be worked out in a conference committee. If you passed it as a standalone proposition it would destroy the insurance markets and we would own the failure of Obamacare ".
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McCain calls on both parties to work together
Then a so-called "vote-a-rama" begins, opening the floodgates for all senators to introduce as many amendments as they want. In his remarks Friday, McConnell said it will be "interesting to see what [Democrats] suggest is the way forward".
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