RED HOT Contributors

 

GOP single-payer amendment fails in Senate

0
CREDIT: This post was originally published on this site

The Senate resoundingly rejected a Republican effort to get Democrats on the record regarding their support — or lack thereof — for a single-payer healthcare system. 

Senators voted 0-57 on the amendment from GOP Sen. Steve Daines (R-Mont.) to implement a government-funded healthcare system.

Democratic Joe ManchinJoe ManchinOvernight Healthcare: Four GOP senators threaten to block ‘skinny’ repeal | Healthcare groups blast skinny repeal | GOP single-payer amendment fails in Senate GOP single-payer amendment fails in Senate Dems don’t want to help GOP improve repeal bill MORE (W.Va.), Joe Donnelly (Ind.), Jon TesterJon TesterOvernight Healthcare: Four GOP senators threaten to block ‘skinny’ repeal | Healthcare groups blast skinny repeal | GOP single-payer amendment fails in Senate GOP single-payer amendment fails in Senate GOP senator forces Dems to vote on single payer MORE (Mont.) and Heidi HeitkampHeidi HeitkampOvernight Healthcare: Four GOP senators threaten to block ‘skinny’ repeal | Healthcare groups blast skinny repeal | GOP single-payer amendment fails in Senate GOP single-payer amendment fails in Senate Regulatory experts push Senate leaders for regulatory reform MORE (N.D.) and Independent Sen. Angus KingAngus KingOvernight Healthcare: Four GOP senators threaten to block ‘skinny’ repeal | Healthcare groups blast skinny repeal | GOP single-payer amendment fails in Senate GOP single-payer amendment fails in Senate Angus King: No one knows what healthcare plan Senate will consider MORE (Maine) joined all Republicans in voting “no,” while 43 Democrats voted “present.”

The vote was widely viewed as a political maneuver to try to get Democrats — particularly 10 senators up for reelection in red and purple states carried by President Trump last year — to go on the record regarding a concept that is picking up steam among their party’s resurgent progressive wing. 

ADVERTISEMENT

But the amendment, part of a days-long debate on repealing and replacing ObamaCare, was widely expected to fail, with Democrats accusing GOP senators of putting up a “sham” proposal. 

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles SchumerPassing the DACA legislation will provide relief to children living in fear OPINION | Trump, there is no better AG than Jeff Sessions — don’t lose him OPINION | Democrats: Time to wish Hillary Clinton good luck and goodbye MORE (D-N.Y.) grilled Republicans ahead of the vote, calling the amendment “pure cynicism, pure politics.” 

“Senator Daines doesn’t support this bill. He just wants to get Democrats on the record. The majority leader has made pending an amendment that both he and the author of the amendment will oppose, and that’s the very definition of a political game. We Democrats aren’t going to go along, because … this isn’t a game,” he said. 

Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersSanders: Senate healthcare fight ‘totally bananas’ Overnight Defense: Military won’t lift transgender ban until Trump sends directions | House passes national security spending | Russian sanctions bill heads to Trump Overnight Cybersecurity: Senate sends Russia sanctions bill to Trump | Senators unveil email privacy bill | Russia tried to spy on Macron with Facebook MORE (I-Vt.), long supportive of single payer, quipped that he hoped Daines “has seen the light, but I suspect not.” 

“I suspect that what Senator Daines is doing is nothing more than an old political trick, trying to embarrass Democrats,” Sanders said from the Senate floor. 

The legislation from Daines uses the same language as a Medicare-for-all bill in the House sponsored by Rep. John Conyers Jr. (D-Mich.).

GOP senators have warned that if they fail in their current bid to at least repeal parts of ObamaCare, they will have to work with Democrats and potentially move closer to a single-payer system. 

The idea has gained traction among the liberal ranks of the Democratic Party. Sanders made Medicare-for-all a centerpiece of his presidential campaign, and Conyers’s bill has 115 co-sponsors in the House. 

Sanders noted that he will soon be introducing a Medicare-for-all, single-payer system — potentially during the freewheeling vote-a-rama expected later Thursday. 

Senate Democrats have to defend 23 seats next election, plus two more held by independents who caucus with them. That includes several red-state Democrats, such as Heitkamp, Manchin, Donnelly and Claire McCaskill (Mo.).

About

We Support OUR Contributors

Get Our Newsletter

 Receive podcast updates
Exclusive insights
Patient Engagement Tips from industry experts
We hate SPAM as much as you do and promise to keep your email address safe.
  • Subscribe to the Podcast