Senate Republicans have only until the end of the month to repeal Obamacare under a special legislative process, and there were new signs Monday that the GOP is getting closer to the magic number of votes.
Sen. John McCain of Arizona told an MSNBC correspondent he might “reluctantly” vote for the measure offered by Sens. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Bill Cassidy of Louisiana, both Republicans. Their bill gets rid of the individual and employer mandates and the 2.3% tax on medical devices, and block-grants money to states, leaving reform up to governors.
McCain said he wanted to determine if the concerns of Arizona’s governor were “taken care of.” Monday afternoon, Gov. Doug Ducey called the bill “the best path forward to repeal and replace Obamacare.”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has reportedly told Republicans that if the bill has the support of at least 50 of the 52 GOP senators, he’ll bring it to the floor. Under the reconciliation process, it would need 50 votes to pass, assuming Vice President Mike Pence breaks the tie.
But even if McCain supports it, Republicans may not quite be at the needed number of votes. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky has said he’s a “no.” Meanwhile, Maine’s Sen. Susan Collins says she “has concerns.”
That may leave the bill’s fate in the hands of Alaska’s Lisa Murkowski. Earlier Monday, she told a CNN reporter she was undecided. In July, Murkowski, Collins and McCain voted against a different Republican plan to repeal Obamacare, scuttling that bill. Paul voted “yes” on that bill.
Poll – Repealed This Year?
Mike “Mish” Shedlock