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The Latest: Senate Republicans Fail to Advance Healthcare Bill

by Countable | 7.28.17

After Tuesday’s successful vote to start debate on the Senate Republicans's plan to repeal and replace Obamacare, the Senate considered numerous amendments to the underlying House-passed bill. Ultimately, in what Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) called "a disappointment," the GOP failed to get the support they needed to pass a scaled-down "skinny" repeal bill as three Republicans — Sens. Susan Collins (R-ME), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), and John McCain (R-AZ) voted against it.

You can see the amendments that were brought up for a vote and whether they were successful below.

Past Votes

"Skinny" Repeal: This amendment would repeal the individual and employer mandates to purchase health insurance, delay the medical device tax from taking effect in 2018 until 2021, and increase contribution limits for health savings accounts. It would leave in place the Medicaid expansion, subsidies for people buying health insurance, and protections for people with preexisting conditions. States would be allowed opt out of some essential health benefits that insurers are required to offer if they cover as many people as Obamacare does with plans that are as comprehensive. Failed 49-51. 7/28 1:40am ET

Sending the Bill to Committee: This vote will be on another motion to send the bill back to committee and requires a simple majority to be successful. Failed 48-52. 7/28 12:30am ET

Heller Amendment: This amendment would repeal the so-called "Cadillac tax" on high-end healthcare plans offered by employers. The Cadillac tax is a 40-percent excise tax on health insurance plans valued at more than $10,200 for individuals or $27,500 for families. Passed 52-48. 7/27 10pm ET

Sending the Bill to Committee: This vote will be on another motion to send the bill back to committee and requires a simple majority to be successful. Failed 43-57. 7/27 9:00pm ET

Strange Amendment: This amendment proposed by Sen. Luther Strange (R-LA) would extend the Hyde Amendment — which bars federal dollars from funding abortions — to all funding disbursed under the healthcare legislation. It would establish a matching arrangement between stability funds and premium tax credits starting in 2019, under which the value of premium tax credits for plans that cover elective abortions would drop to 10 percent and the remaining 90 percent would be available as protected monthly payments to insurers to benefit people reliant on tax credits. This amendment requires 60 votes for passage because it hasn't been scored by the Congressional Budget Office, so the Senate has to waive provisions of the Budget Act. Failed 50-50. 7/27 5pm ET

Daines Amendment: This amendment proposed by Sen. Steve Daines (R-MT) (who will vote against it) would establish a single-payer healthcare system, and its legislative text is identical that of the Improved and Expanded Medicare for All Act as introduced in the House. Daines introduced the amendment to force Senate Democrats to go on record regarding a single-payer healthcare system despite opposing such a system himself. Failed 0-57 with 43 senators voting present. 7/27 2:15pm ET

Heller Amendment: This amendment from Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV) would express the sense of the Senate that the Medicaid expansion is a priority and that Obamacare must be improved. Failed 10-90. 7/26 6:10pm ET

Sending the Bill to Committee: This vote will be on another motion to send the bill back to committee and requires a simple majority to be successful. Failed 48-51. 7/26 6:10pm ET

Sending the Bill to Committee: This vote will be on a motion to send the bill to the relevant committees in the Senate for revision, and will require a simple majority to be successful. Failed 48-52. 7/26 3:30pm ET

Repeal and Delay with Paul Amendment: This amendment repeals many core provisions of Obamacare after two years, including the individual & employer mandates, the Medicaid expansion, subsidies to help people buy health insurance, taxes on the wealthy and several sectors of the healthcare industry. Sen. Rand Paul’s (R-KY) amendment would prohibit people from using government subsidies to buy plans that cover abortion. Failed 45-55. 7/26 3:30pm ET

Better Care Reconciliation Act with Cruz / Portman Amendments: This amendment uses the Senate’s Better Care Reconciliation Act as a baseline. It adds to that Sen. Ted Cruz’s (R-TX) Consumer Freedom Amendment which would let insurance companies that sell an Obamacare-qualified insurance plan also offer lower-cost plans with less coverage; and Sen. Rob Portman’s (R-OH) amendment providing an additional $100 billion in Medicaid funding. A vote was held on a motion to waive the Budget Act and its 60-vote threshold with respect to this amendment — which was needed because it hasn’t been scored by the Congressional Budget Office. Failed 43-57. 7/25 - 9:55pm ET

Tell your senators how you want them to vote on these amendments using the Take Action button.

— Eric Revell

(Photo Credit: US Senate / Public Domain)

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