by V Saxena | Conservative Tribune
It has taken months to reach this climactic moment, but on Wednesday Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell finally announced an official vote on Obamacare for next week. What remains unknown is whether the vote will be for a clean repeal of Obamacareor for the GOP-led Senate’s Better Care Reconciliation Act, which collapsed Monday evening after Utah Sen. Mike Lee and Kansas Sen. Jerry Moran announced they would oppose it.
“I think we all agree it’s better to both repeal and replace, but we could have a vote on either,” the Senate leader announced Wednesday afternoon following a televised meeting at the White House between President Donald Trump and Republican senators, according to NPR.
“And if we end up voting on repeal only, it will be fully amendable on the Senate floor,” he added. “And if it were to pass without any amendment at all, there’s a two-year delay before it kicks in.”
In other words, despite the BCRA’s collapse, and even though the president and McConnell both pushed for a clean repeal in statements made following its collapse, the repeal and replace bill appears to be back on the table, for better or worse.
“I want to disabuse any of you of the notion that we will not have that vote next week,” McConnell reportedly concluded. “We’re going to vote on the motion to proceed to the bill next week.”
Did he mean it, though? Marc A. Thiessen, a political commentator for The Washington Post, suspected that he did — and that, furthermore, there was legitimate strategy behind the Senate leader’s very murky plan to “have a vote on either.” Suppose McConnell puts the clean bill up for vote and it fails as suspected, given obstruction by turncoat Republicans. What then?
“He will have proved to the conservatives that full repeal can’t pass and that the BCRA is the only hope for any kind of repeal,” Thiessen opined. “He can then bring the BCRA up for a vote. When he does, there will be increased pressure on the moderates, including from the White House, to vote yes — and pass a bill.”
If he’s correct, it means McConnell is purposely using the clean repeal bill to force his colleagues’ hands; which in itself is both disappointing but also reassuring.
It’s disappointing because many among the base prefer that Obamacare simply be repealed, period. But it’s also reassuring because it demonstrates that the Senate majority leader is serious about getting something, anything passed, which at this point would be a blessing unto itself.
H/T The Daily Caller
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