WASHINGTON — Senate Republicans Tuesday postponed a planned vote on the GOP bill to replace Obamacare until after the July 4th recess. Senators were told of the delay at a Republican lunch by Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, according to multiple sources.
At least five GOP senators had said they were not prepared to vote in favor of a procedural measure that was slated to take place as early as Tuesday evening. That vote was necessary to begin the process that would have allowed the senate to take a final vote by the end of the week.
Republican senators expressed their reservations about the bill as they walked into their weekly Tuesday lunch where they were joined by Vice President Mike Pence and White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus. All GOP senators have been invited to a meeting at the White House this afternoon to discuss the legislation.
Republicans from both sides of the aisle have expressed deep reservations about the bill since it was unveiled late last week. Conservatives were disappointed that the bill does not constitute a full repeal of the Affordable Care Act while moderates in the senate are concerned about the deep cuts in Medicaid spending.
On Monday, the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office released its analysis of the bill, estimating that the bill would result in 22 million more uninsured Americans, compared to current law, by 2026 — adding to the political uncertainty. With no Democratic support for the bill, GOP leadership needs the votes of at least 50 of the 52 Republican senators to pass the legislation.