Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell pulled the plug late Monday on the Republican effort to overhaul the U.S. health insurance system and pledged the chamber will now focus on only dismantling the 2010 health care law.
“Regretfully, it is now apparent that the effort to repeal and immediately replace the failure of Obamacare will not be successful,” the Kentucky Republican said.
McConnell said the Senate will now take up the House-passed health care bill and amend it with legislation the Senate supported in 2015 to repeal the 2010 health care law “with a two-year delay to provide for a stable transition period to a patient-centered health care system that gives Americans access to quality, affordable care.”
Before McConnell’s announcement on the next steps, President Donald Trump tweeted Monday night that “Republicans should just REPEAL failing ObamaCare now & work on a new Healthcare Plan that will start from a clean slate. Dems will join in!”
Democrats have made it clear they won’t support anything that would repeal the law but indicated they would discuss changes to stabilize the health insurance marketplaces.
“Rather than repeating the same failed, partisan process yet again, Republicans should start from scratch and work with Democrats on a bill that lowers premiums, provides long term stability to the markets and improves our health care system,” said Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer in a statement issued before McConnell announced next steps.