GOP-led Senate Loses Legislative Gamble to Repeal Affordable Care Act



July 28, 2017


Anna Castro | | 619.228.5332

GOP-led Senate Loses Legislative Gamble to Repeal Affordable Care Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. —  In the early morning hours of Friday, the Republican-led Senate failed to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA), delivering a major blow to President Donald Trump and to GOP leaders who campaigned on the promise to undo President Barack Obama’s signature program.

The post-midnight vote that would have partially rolled back major ACA provisions, after a full repeal measure failed, ended a week-long legislative horror show that demonstrated the weak backbone of some Republican senators in standing up to President Trump even as their constituents demanded that the ACA be fixed, not ended.

The following is a statement by Ben Monterroso, executive director of Mi Familia Vota:

“Today, the will of the people has won. Our communities pushed back on the GOP leadership’s attempts to take away health care that has served millions of people including Latinos, and expanded access to Medicaid for children, elderly people, people with disabilities, and low-income workers. We are also happy to stand with our allies at Planned Parenthood, an organization that is quite frankly, irreplaceable. They keep their doors open no matter what, even as they are continually pushing back against repeated GOP attempts to defund them.

“The hero of the night was Arizona Sen. John McCain, who joined Republican Sens. Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, in voting against their party’s bill. McCain, who returned to the Senate only a few days after being diagnosed with brain cancer, delivered on an earlier speech this week about the Senate needing to return to ‘regular order’ with his vote.

“Clearly, the Senate’s handling of this important issue was the worst anyone could remember in recent history. A vote in the middle of the night that would decide the fate of millions of people deserves greater consideration than what we saw. Because of McCain’s vote, the Senate may decide to work through the normal committee process. Hopefully, bipartisanship will prevail and we will have a bill that gives Americans the health care we deserve. Whatever happens next, we will keep a close watch.

“I want to add MFV’s deep disappointment in Republican Sens. Jeff Flake of Arizona, Cory Gardner of Colorado, and Dean Heller of Nevada. Both Flake and Heller are considered the two most vulnerable Republicans up for re-election next year. Instead of listening to their constituents, they let themselves get bullied by Trump, who threatened to back primary opponents against them if they voted against the bill. Earlier this week, Heller showed signs of switching from a ‘no’ to a ‘yes’ after attending a meeting at the White House where he was seated next to the president, who needled him in front of news cameras.

“We need strong leaders in the Senate who will stand up for their constituents. The votes that these Senators cast this week will be remembered in November 2018.”