Senators, Including Ailing McCain, Expected to Begin Vote on Health Bill Today

Republican Kelli Ward a medical doctor who ran a primary campaign against Mc Cain in the 2016 election called upon the ailing senator to resign in a Friday statement
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26 July, 2017

Regarding "Ailing McCain warns colleagues of return, blasts Trump for ending aid to Syrian rebels" (Page A8, Friday), as U.S. Sen. With all Democrats opposed, President Donald Trump can afford just two defectors on the health care reform vote, making McCain's vote critical.

Trump in a tweet also called McCain an "American hero".

Sen. John McCain's former primary challenger didn't wait long to say that he should step down from office following this week's devastating news about his health. Senator McCain is receiving the best treatment and we wish him the best as he battles this disease.

Yet fellow Republicans took McCain's return as a positive sign for Tuesday's vote. He'll push a awful bill through on a 50-50 vote, with Vice President Mike Pence breaking the tie, before he'll invite Democrats to the table or even listen to Republican governors like Ohio's John Kasich.

For his part, the president made a positive vote on a motion-to-proceed his main demand in a video that featured "victims of Obamacare" along with some presidential thunder-and-lightning aimed especially at Senate Republicans who promised to repeal and replace Obamacare but haven't succeeded so far.

But no one, including the senators expected to vote on Tuesday, is sure what McConnell is planning.

That means Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has a slightly wider margin for error as the vote to start debate on the health care plan approaches.

John McCain (R-Ariz.) said late Monday he would return to the Senate this week ahead of a vote to debate a bill that would gut Obamacare and potentially deprive tens of millions of Americans of health insurance.

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McCain announced last week that he had been diagnosed with glioblastoma, an aggressive type of brain cancer.

Paul tweeted that McConnell told him the plan was to take up the bill that repealed Obamacare that House and Senate Republicans passed in 2015 but was vetoed by President Barack Obama - even though it requires 60 votes and will be defeated.

And it's not even clear the GOP has the votes to pass that. [People] like her aren't welcome in the US Sen, ' Manchin said. I hate to tell you.

It is in unclear, however, if McCain's return will improve Republicans' prospects of passing a key procedural hurdle to move the health-care bill forward. As a doctor, I've counseled people in similar situations and these end-of-life choices are never easy.

He went on: "By the way, are you going to get the votes?"

He said he was in touch over the weekend with Seema Verma, the Trump administration's head of Medicare and Medicaid, and that her proposal to make up some funding with non-Medicaid money has potential.

McConnell met with conservative activists Monday to discuss health care.

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