Republican efforts in the Senate to repeal and replace Obamacare suffered a major setback on Monday after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell offered a statement declaring that the effort to repeal and immediately replace the “failure of Obamacare” will not be successful.
Lacking enough “yes” votes in the Senate to approve the latest revised version of the proposed Republican healthcare bill, known as the Better Care Reconciliation Act, after 2 more Republican senators on Monday dissented and joined the opposition camp with Kentucky Senator Rand Paul and Maine Senator Susan Collins in opposing the bill, Majority Leader McConnell was unable to rally enough support among Senate Republicans to approve a Republican replacement plan that many conservatives endorsed and was a key campaign pledge of President Trump, although it would have left millions more Americans uninsured and polls showed it wasn’t popular among Americans.
Senator Mike Lee of Utah and Senator Jerry Moran of Kansas were the 2 dissenting Republican senators who agreed to not endorse the Republican revised replacement healthcare plan that was floated late last week and retained some of Obamacare taxes, unlike the initial first version.
Senate Majority Leader McConnell said in his statement that in the days ahead, the Senate will take up the House bill with the goal of repealing Obamacare while providing a two-year delay to develop a brand new affordable patient centered health care system.
“So, in the coming days, the Senate will vote to take up the House bill with the first amendment in order being what a majority of the Senate has already supported in 2015 and that was vetoed by then-President Obama: a repeal of Obamacare with a two-year delay to provide for a stable transition period to a patient-centered health care system that gives Americans access to quality, affordable care” Sen. McConell said.
Questions remain about how insurance companies will respond in the exchanges over the next two years if Republicans are successful with their drive to repeal Obamacare in the days ahead.
Some insurance companies may not want to remain committed in the exchanges knowing that major changes await them after two years with little warning about what to plan for in the future.
The failure of Republicans to unite around the correct pathway to dismantle Obamacare, a complicated endeavor, that had the potential to explode and result in some political pushback during the upcoming mid-term elections in 2018, reveals that governing with a brash Republican president who campaigned on repealing and replacing Obamacare and offering the largest tax cuts in U.S. history is proving more difficult to execute without first reaching across the aisle and working with Democrats.
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