For the second time, the Republican plan to repeal Obamacare looks to be defeated by Senator John McCain (R-Arizona). This attempt, Graham-Cassidy, was authored by McCain’s closest friend, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina).
“I cannot in good conscience vote for Graham-Cassidy,” McCain tweeted Friday. “A bill impacting so many lives deserves a bipartisan approach.”
— John McCain (@SenJohnMcCain) September 22, 2017
McCain has been critical of the Obamacare repeal attempts, calling for a return to what he calls “regular order”. The lack of debate, expert hearing, Congressional Budget Office score, amendment and involvement from both parties has been the major sticking point for McCain, even now when opposing a bill written by some of his closest allies in Washington.
“The bill’s authors are my dear friends, and I think the world of them. I know they are acting consistently with their beliefs and sense of what is best for the country. So am I,” he said.
The deadline for use of the processes by which the Senate hoped to pass the bill without thread of filibuster is rapidly approaching, and McCain’s vow to vote no once again makes it unlikely that the attempt to repeal Obamacare will be possible without bipartisan support.
This marks the second time where McCain has prevented passage of the repeal.
After being diagnosed with brain cancer in July, McCain returned to the Senate to applause before casting the decisive vote late in the night to kill the ‘skinny bill’ that was then attempting to repeal Obamacare.
Now, with the repeal attempt looking to be dead in the water again, the future of Obamacare repeal remains uncertain. While it would be no small feat to attempt to tackle this problem after the timer runs out on the legislative processes the Republicans were intent on using, Congressional Republicans seem determined to tilt at this particular campaign promise.
The Republican base is already bristling at Senator McCain’s vote. President Trump’s largest online community of supporters — the /r/The_Donald subreddit — are actively hoping for Senator McCain to succumb to brain cancer.
“Why can’t his brain tumor kill him already?” The_Donald subscriber ImStanleyGoodspeed wrote.
“Good ol’ John McCain, bless his diseased cancerous mind,” read one submission headline in the forum. “Was there any doubt?”
“Fucking cancer needs to hurry up,” wrote subscriber HILLARYPROLAPSEDANUS.
Trump supporter and Pizzagate conspiracy theorist Mike Cernovich simply lamented, “The GOP has been McCucked,” using a favorite insult of the alt-right.
The GOP has been McCucked. https://t.co/w2Ja238onk
— Mike Cernovich 🇺🇸 (@Cernovich) September 22, 2017
Katelyn Kivel is a journalist and political scientist from Kalamazoo, Michigan who has specialized in law, policy and government reporting over the course of her career. Follow her on Twitter @katelynkivel.