1 Vote Down, More to Come on ObamaCare Repeal

GOP sets sights on 3 components of the Affordable Care Act
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 25, 2017 3:58 PM CDT

(Newser) – Despite their successful vote Tuesday, Republican senators may not end up with the Affordable Care Act repeal the GOP has been promising for seven years, reports NBC News as it runs down the next steps in the process. The next vote is expected to be on the 2015 version of an ObamaCare repeal bill, which is expected to fail. A second vote on the GOP's Better Care Reconciliation Act is also expected to fail. After that, Senate Republicans plan to hold votes on a series of amendments that would amount to a "skinny" repeal of ObamaCare without a replacement. Here's what else you need to know as the future of American health care is being decided:

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  • The New York Times explains a "skinny" repeal would amount to removing the individual and employer mandates and the medical device tax. While those are the least popular portions of ObamaCare, getting rid of them could result in increased premiums, fewer people covered under Medicaid, and smaller, sicker markets that are unappealing to health insurers.
  • Both Republicans and Democrats will be able to add amendments during that part of the process. The Wall Street Journal reports that could lead to some uncomfortable votes in a situation with "few recent precedents."
  • Vice President Pence cast the tie-breaking vote Tuesday. It's the fourth such vote Pence has cast in his first year as vice president, which puts him in the middle of the pack for the office but nowhere near John Adams' 29 tie-breaking votes in his first year, according to FiveThirtyEight.
  • "We can now deliver grt healthcare to all Americans!" President Trump tweeted following Tuesday's vote.
  • Trump expanded on his thoughts during a joint press conference, thanking "very brave man" John McCain for returning to Washington to cast the decisive vote, the Hill reports. "I want to congratulate the American people, because we're going to give you great health care," Trump added.
  • Speaking of McCain, he received a standing ovation from fellow senators upon his return Tuesday, USA Today reports. He also criticized the GOP health care bill and the process currently underway during a speech following his "yes" vote. He says he won't vote for the bill as it stands and that the Senate should start over with actual hearings and input from Democrats. He encouraged senators to "stop listening to the bombastic loudmouths" who decry compromise: "To hell with them!"
(Read more health care reform stories.)

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