In the late hours of July 27th, the Senate failed to do what they’ve been gunning to do for seven years.
After seven years, all the Republicans could produce was a bill that nobody had read. A bill that was written at noon, introduced at 10pm, and voted on under the cover of darkness and disgrace.
The so-called “skinny repeal” would have repealed the individual and employer mandates, funding for preventative healthcare, and prevented Medicaid beneficiaries from being reimbursed for Planned Parenthood expenditures. It would have torpedoed insurance markets and sent premiums skyrocketing.
It would have kicked fifteen million off their healthcare coverage by next year, and another million over the next few years – all for the savings of just $179 billion over the next few years. To put that in perspective, it’s barely 1/3rd of what we spend on the military every single year.
Its failure follows a veritable carnival of political incompetence and duplicity. At one point this afternoon, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) declared that the bill is a disaster and a fraud, but that he would vote for it anyway.
Seriously, this is weapons grade bonkers. 3 Senators just announced they will vote for repeal only if assured it will never become law.
— Chris Murphy (@ChrisMurphyCT) July 27, 2017
It soon became clear that nobody in the Republican Party actually wanted the bill to become law, but rather wanted it to pass so that it could go to “conference committee,” punting the bill back to the House but allowing President Trump to have his Rose Garden moment and tell his voters that they finally did it.
This entire process has been a disgusting perversion of the legislative process and an appalling breach of the public trust. This was an attempt to wage class warfare on a mass level that would have left tens of thousands, if not more, dead in its wake.
The final vote tally came down to 49 to 51 votes, killed by Republicans Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Susan Collins (R-ME) and John McCain (R-AZ).
McCain’s vote was cast following a whirlwind of speculation after he dragged himself out of his hospital bed to come to Washington for this pivotal vote. Perhaps it was his recent diagnosis with brain cancer that caused a change of heart.
Or perhaps it was something a little more personal. The President himself congratulated McCain for coming back – but it seems the man who Trump mocked for being shot down in Vietnam would have the last laugh.
In any case, the Affordable Care Act will remain the law of the land and the Republicans have just dealt themselves yet another stunning defeat.
There’s so much to be said and much discussion about where to go from here – but for now, we can finally all get a good night’s rest.
Then we fight for universal healthcare!
Add your name to millions demanding that Congress take action on the President’s crimes. IMPEACH DONALD TRUMP!