Sunday, May 7, 2017

Alexander Bolton — House healthcare bill faces upheaval in Senate

The ball is now in the Senate's court. Here are the issues based on Senate rules. There will also be disagreements among factions, as well as senators who face election in states that are now solidly GOP.

The GOP has only a two vote majority in the Senate, so they can only lose two votes to pass the bill under Senate rules avoiding a filibuster, since in the case of a 50-50 vote, Vice-President Pence could break that tie in favor of the GOP.

Politically, this would be dangerous for the GOP, however, since the bill narrowly passed in the House and will narrowly pass in the Senate if it does, with no Democratic votes. 

Given that President Trump did not carry the popular vote, this would be climbing out on a limb. Even if the legislation should pass under these circumstances, it would likely not be viable for long politically unless the GOP can increase its popular vote. The demographics don't support that, and the American public is already supportive of single payer.

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