Obamacare Repeal: Failure to Launch

Senator Cassidy, shown speaking, is co-sponsor of the Obamacare repeal bill.

As of this afternoon, Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell has declared that his Obamacare repeal effort is dead.

Maine Senator Susan Collins issued a statement yesterday announcing her opposition to the Graham-Cassidy health care bill. Collins’ statement all but ensured that the repeal effort would flat-line.

Collins’ “no” vote left McConnell one vote shy of the 50 needed. The end of the week marks the activation of certain Senate rules that, when in effect, require 60 votes for bill passage in this case. Collins’ objections over the bill centered around Medicaid and Medicare funding, which many of her Maine constituents rely on for health care.

Senator John McCain also publicly denounced this version of repeal as he did with an earlier version in July. Rand Paul of Kentucky opposed the structure of the bill.

President Trump commented Tuesday from the White House. “We are disappointed in certain so-called Republicans,” he said. Speaker of the House Paul Ryan expressed his own displeasure with the Senate’s failure. “We’re a little frustrated that the Senate has not acted on a seminal promise.”