Republicans have had seven years to prepare a replacement for Obamacare, but they have procrastinated until forced into rushing to put something together. It seems that none of Washington’s Republicans expected to win elections and control the House, Senate and White House, all of which are necessary to repeal or replace Obamacare. The House narrowly passed their version of a replacement, but it was pretty much dead on arrival at the Senate. Senate Republicans have been working on their own replacement. Their first version was a disaster so they went back to the drawing board. The latest version went to a procedural vote today. Republicans needed at least 50 of the 52 GOP Senators to vote for the bill. After shocking the nation with his diagnosis of brain cancer, Sen. John McCain arrived back in Washington in time to cast a key vote. When the votes were counted, it was 50-50. Per the US Constitution, Vice President Mike Pence then cast the tie-breaking vote, giving the GOP healthcare bill a 51-50 victory.
Senate Republicans on Tuesday resuscitated their health care legislation for now, narrowly clearing it past a key test vote with the help of Sen. John McCain’s dramatic return to the chamber for the first time since his brain cancer diagnosis.
The Senate voted 51-50 to start debate, with Vice President Pence casting the tie-breaker. The procedural vote once again brings the ObamaCare overhaul legislation back from the brink of collapse, after intense prodding from President Trump who had pressured senators to skip recess until they act on health care.
The bill still faces a tough road ahead. But it was a heavy lift just to get to this point…
Now that the bill has managed to barely make it to the next stage, senators are taking off the gloves and prepared to fight battle, add, subtract and do whatever they want to the bill before it comes to a full vote. If it manages to pass a full vote of the Senate, it will then have to return to the House where it is certain to face even more debate, additions, subtractions and media hoopla.