The House of Representatives has passed the American Health Care Act today by a 217-213 vote, thus voting to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare) in the process. This was a vote to take health care away from ten millions of Americans, and to sentence many sick people to death. But before you pull a Planet of the Apes and start yelling “You Maniacs, you blew it up,” be aware that the AHCA can still be killed in the Senate.
It’s not shocking that the revised AHCA, which is even worse than the original failed AHCA from a month ago, managed to pass the House. On some level it’s shocking that it only passed by a few votes, which means that somewhere in the ballpark of twenty House Republicans voted against it. That shows how vulnerable this bill will be in the Senate.
The Republicans only have 52 seats in the Senate. So if even three Senate Republicans decide to vote no on the AHCA, then it’ll die, and ObamaCare will be saved. It’s too early to know what the whip count on the Senate might end up being. But all we have to do is identify the Republican Senators from moderate states who are up for reelection soon, and start calling them right now to make sure they know that we’ll lead a nationwide effort to cost them their seats if they vote yes on the AHCA.
For those wondering, this is the kind of thing the Democrats can try to filibuster in the Senate (there is no filibuster in the House). It’s not yet clear whether Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell could or would shut down such a filibuster, as this is a different procedure from the recent Supreme Court confirmation. But if we can convince three GOP Senators to vote no on the AHCA, then a filibuster won’t even be needed. Millions of lives are now on the line, and it’s up to us to salvage this.
We’ll get you the names and direct phone numbers of the flippable GOP Senators once they start laying out their stances. But there’s no need to wait for that. You can call the Senate switchboard at (202) 224-3121 right now and ask for your own state’s two Senators, then call back and begin asking for every Republican Senator in the country. They all answer to you, whether you live in their state or not. Help fund Palmer Report
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report