The DC Establishment conceded defeat to Rand Paul late Monday, canceling a vote on a bill that would have reformed and expanded many parts of Obamacare.
Instead of a bill that only repeals a few Obamacare regulations, while keeping nearly all of the rest of bill and expanding other parts, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell now says he will seek two votes. One, which completely repeals Obamacare, and then a second, in which the Senate will decide with what to replace it.
“Regretfully, it is now apparent that the effort to repeal and immediately replace the failure of Obamacare will not be successful,” said McConnell in a statement released late Monday.
“So, in the coming days, the Senate will vote to take up the House bill with the first amendment in order being what a majority of the Senate has already supported in 2015 and that was vetoed by then-President Obama: a repeal of Obamacare with a two-year delay to provide for a stable transition period to a patient-centered health care system that gives Americans access to quality, affordable care,” said McConnell.
That was the approach demanded by Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, who made it clear Obamacare must be entirely repealed and all government intrusions into the health care market be stripped out.
Paul refused to back down when challenged by GOP leaders, and took his case directly to President Trump. Trump’s signals that he would side with Paul helped sink the GOP leadership bill, known as “Obamacare 2.”
Republicans promised to repeal Obamacare. They even passed a bill in 2015 doing that. Now they have a chance to actually fulfill that promise.