On Thursday evening, after nearly 12 hours of delay, the House of Representatives voted along party lines to implement "martial law"—a term that in this instance doesn't mean a military coup but rather a loophole that allows them to hold a floor vote on a bill that was marked up and changed that same day.
The vote was 227-189, along party lines.
The move clears the way for the House to quickly bring to the floor their Obamacare repeal bill – when and if they finally reach internal agreement on what it should be. A final vote on the bill is expected Friday.
The rules change became necessary after House Rules Committee did not complete its revisions of the controversial bill after 13 hours of deliberation on Wednesday. Negotiations with both the House's hardline conservatives and moderate Republicans failed to produce a compromise Wednesday. Instead, the committee voted to waive a House rule that mandates lawmakers wait at least a day before voting on a bill once it clears the committee process.
Negotiations on the bill dragged on through the day Thursday until leadership eventually postponed a final vote on the yet-to-be seen bill.
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