The President of the United States has said he is a winner and he is going to be doing so much winning. Anthony Scaramucci, the new White House Communications Director, echoed that sentiment in public appearances since taking the Communications job. The track record on healthcare, however, has been one tie and a bunch of failures!
The Senate began debate on their effort to repeal and replace Obamacare yesterday. The first day of debate saw a small win for Republicans as the motion to proceed and actually debate health care passed.
That success was quickly tempered by the utter failure of the Better Care Reconciliation Act. The Senate debated Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s secretly drafter repeal and replace plan, the BCRA. It then went up for a vote as the most comprehensive repeal and replace option available to the Senate. It failed. 9 Republican Senators joined all 48 Democrats in voting no on the bill.
The plan for today was to vote on a “clean repeal” plan. This proposal is a repeal and delay option. Repealing Obamacare but delaying the bill for two years to allow Congress time to pass a replacement option. That vote also failed.
Reaction to the Failure
In 2015 Republicans passed the repeal legislation they voted on again today. That bill was passed as a political message with a full understanding that it would not become law. President Obama vetoed the legislation in 2015, so the Republicans were able to vote “yes” than to send a message without having to own any damaging results.
When it came time to vote on this legislation again today, the pressure was on for Senators who voted to repeal in 2015 to not change their vote now. But Senators are fully aware of the fact that now the stakes are high and they are real. The President is willing to sign a repeal only bill.
The pressure on Senators to pass the bill was not significant enough to bend their concern over the irresponsibility of passing a repeal without a replacement. Seven Republicans joined unanimous Democratic opposition to the proposal, defeating the bill easily.