What's Next In The Health Care Debate?

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Their "no" votes signaled that the so-called "clean repeal" bill did not have the support from key Republican senators. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.V., Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, John McCain, R-Ariz., Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn.

Because neither of these amendments was scored by the Congressional Budget Office, Senate rules require that they receive 60 votes to pass, as opposed to the 51 votes now required under the budget reconciliation rules that Mr. McConnell has enacted. Rand Paul introduced the amendment - within two years, and come up with a replacement plan in the meantime. Paul and other conservatives have led the push for a complete repeal of Obamacare. The legislation also would have immediately repealed the individual mandate while continuing the Obamacare requirement that insurers offer coverage to those with pre-existing conditions.

Senate Majority Leader Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY), the man with the plan. He went on to note that many insurers submitted two sets of rates to state regulations for 2018, including a "worst-case" scenario with higher premiums ― in part, to protect against the possibility of individual mandate repeal.

"I'm for repeal and replace, and we're going to continue to work on replacement", Portman said after Wednesday's vote.

Every senator, Republican and Democrat alike, will now have a virtually unlimited opportunity to debate and offer amendments to help put together a health care bill that helps Americans. "Either that bill passes or those senators (who vote against it) will be held responsible for preserving the Affordable Care Act in the minds of their Republican voters".

It was the Senate's consecutive second failure in 24 hours to repeal the 2010 Obamacare that has provided health insurance to about 20 million people.

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The Blue Cross Blue Shield Association warned Wednesday that repealing, or eliminating the Obamacare mandate that everyone purchase insurance would have dire consequences.

Wednesday's defeat comes after the main Republican proposal to replace the ACA was defeated 43-57 on Tuesday night, falling far short of the 60 votes required for passage.

The final tally was 51-50, with Vice President Mike Pence breaking the tie after two Republicans joined all 48 Democrats in voting "no".

Though the Senate has yet to release details, the "skinny repeal" plan would likely eliminate the individual mandate, which requires almost all Americans to obtain health insurance or pay a penalty, and the employer mandate, which obligates larger companies to provide affordable coverage to their full-time workers. Gardner voted "yes." Such a vote is reckless indeed, as who can trust that our gridlock-prone Congress is up to the task of replacing Obamacare with reasonable reform.

The White House couldn't say what happens to the transgender Americans who are now serving in the US military after Trump announced that they couldn't serve in any capacity. Deb Fischer voted for the amendment.

But Heller said he remained open to Republican legislation overhauling Obamacare if states "are given the flexibility to build on their successes and ensure protection for those who are now covered". CBO projected earlier this month that 32 million more people would be left without health insurance in 2026.

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