October 22, 2021

Senate votes 52-47 to gut key parts of Obamacare

730x420-3a88d18e2775e199fd6a757e8afca42c-1The Senate approved a bill Thursday that would gut much of the Affordable Care Act, marking the first time both chambers of Congress have voted to repeal President Obama’s signature health care law since it became law five years ago.

The bill passed by 52-47 but will not head to the president’s desk yet. While the House approved a similar repeal measure, the Senate amended it, which will require the House to vote on the bill passed Thursday by the Senate.

While the House is likely to pass the Senate’s version, the legislation will never become law.

President Obama has promised to veto the bill, and Republicans lack a supermajority required to override his veto. But passage is a significant messaging victory for the GOP, which has been promising for years that they would send Obama a bill that repeals the law.

“For years, the American people have been calling on Washington to build a bridge away from Obamacare. For years, Democrats prevented the Senate from passing legislation to do so,” said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky. He called the bill’s passage “a victory for the middle class families who’ve endured this law’s pain for too long.”

The bill does stop all of Obamacare but it effectively ends the mandate that requires most people to purchase health insurance.

Senate lawmakers voted to pass the bill after hours of debate on a string of amendments, many of them unrelated to the underlying bill.

Democrats proposed a handful of amendments aimed at bolstering gun control, including a proposal to expand background checks and another measure that would have prohibited people on the federal terrorism watch list from purchasing guns and explosives.

Republicans blocked those amendments, while Democrats prevented the GOP from adding amendments that would have expanded gun rights, including a proposal by Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., to lift gun ownership restrictions in the District of Columbia.

The legislation also includes a provision to strip taxpayer funding from Planned Parenthood, a women’s health care and abortion provider. Democratic and moderate Republican lawmakers failed in their efforts to strip that language out of the bill through the amendment process.

Source: Washington Examiner