Yesterday the Senate voted to proceed with the motion to debate and vote on a health care bill. In other words, they voted to hold a vote. The motion to proceed succeeded by the narrowest of margins with Mike Pence casting a tie-breaking vote.
What comes next is 20 hours of debate, according to procedural rules, on a bill that must be largely budgetary in nature. Already debated and killed was a version of Mitch McConnell’s Better Care Reconciliation Act with the Ted Cruz Amendment, though it had not yet received a CBO score. That vote squarely failed 43-57.
Debate will continue this morning with a vote expected next on full Obamacare repeal (though that motion is expected to fail as well), the House’s deeply unpopular AHCA bill and any number of amendments from both parties. By the end of the week, Senators hope to vote on a health care bill that does not yet exist and will not be allowed public debate or time for a CBO score in hopes that it will improve health care beyond what the ACA has already done.
What they’re not telling you
Obamacare opponents are pushing for repeal for two reasons: partisanship and money. Despite recent polls showing that 71% of American voters prefer a bipartisan solution to fix Obamacare over any ACA repeal or replacement, partisan politicians feel the need to carry out a repeal simply because they’ve been calling for it for 7 years. And also because the replacement options would save the federal government money that can be immediately transferred into tax cuts the moment senators are freed up to move on to tax reform. But those savings come at the cost of complete loss of health care for at least 20 million people, plus higher health care costs for millions more. They also fail to save money in the end, and simply transfer health care costs to states and hospitals by reducing preventative care and delaying medical costs until illnesses become grave and exponentially costly.
Keep calling senators
We know you’ve called. We know you’ve tweeted. But now is not the time to stop — not today or any day this week.
CALL TO ACTION
- Make a plan to call Senator Hatch and Senator Lee every day this week. Tell them how you feel about their vote on the motion to proceed. Remind them that, although Senator McCain supported the motion to proceed, he is also calling for a bipartisan solution to healthcare alongside the vast majority of Americans. Ask them to do the same. Ask them to oppose any amendment that would kick millions off of health insurance, through insurance markets into chaos, raise prices or risk loss of coverage for pre-existing conditions or cut Medicaid.
- Sign and share this petition, listed on our Petitions, Petitions! page, which we update daily.
Sen. Orrin Hatch (202) 224-5251 (DC) // (801) 524-4380 (SLC) // (801) 375-7881 (Provo) // (435) 634-1795 (St. George) // (801) 625-5672 (Ogden) // (435) 586-8435 (Cedar City)
Sen. Mike Lee 202-224-5444 (DC) // 801-524-5933 (SLC) // 435-628-5514 (St. George) // 801-392-9633 (Ogden)