On Tuesday night, just hours after Senate Republicans voted to advance to floor debate on their efforts to re-write health care policy, with Vice President Mike Pence breaking the tie, the Senate decisively rejected the proposal to repeal-and-replace Obamacare, CNN reports.
The surprising move dealt a fatal blow to Trumpcare, which has been considered one of the worst legislations ever introduced in Congress.
On Tuesday afternoon, two GOP senators — Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski — sided with all Democrats in opposition, meaning all remaining Republicans and Pence were necessary for the motion to pass.
Emotions were high all afternoon — as the vote began, protesters in the Senate gallery shouted “kill the bill” and “shame, shame, shame!”
Hours later, however, the Senators cast their second vote on what could be dozens of amendments considered to it.
As reported by CNN:
This second vote dealt with a measure that combined a previous Senate proposal known as the Better Care Reconciliation Act — that was rejected by several Republican senators — with $100 billion in extra money for people on Medicaid desired by moderate Republicans and a proposal from conservative Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, to allow bare-bones health insurance plans.
Democrats moved successfully to kill the amendment, which was possible because it had not been officially scored by the Congressional Budget Office and therefore didn’t meet the complicated reconciliation rules that the Senate is using to consider the bill.
Republicans needed 60 votes to keep the amendment alive. It died on a 43 to 57 vote.
The vote came after a Senate clerk was forced to read the text of the amendment aloud in the Senate chamber, all part of the delaying tactics Democrats employing to express their overall unhappiness with the bill.
After derailing Trumpcare –again–, the lawmakers are expected to cast a vote on a “repeal-only” proposal on Wednesday. It too is expected to be defeated because a vast majority of Republicans as well as all Democrats reject repealing without a replacement ready.