Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) on Thursday said that while Republicans may be able to get their latest attempt to repeal and replace Obamacare through the House, they will not have enough Senate votes to send the bill to President Donald Trump’s desk.
“With this bill here, I said there is no way, no way, that I understand this process,” Manchin said in an interview with Politico.
He said Republicans have the “power of the majority” to pass the measure through the Senate with 51 votes through a process called budget reconciliation, but questioned whether that will be enough.
“The power of the Senate and the way the Senate works, it takes usually 60 votes to fix things,” Manchin said. “Why would you throw the baby out with the bathwater with 51 and then try to basically bring the baby back to life and resuscitate it with 60? The votes aren’t there.”
He said there are “ways to fix” Obamacare through bipartisan compromise.
“Why won’t we just say, we’re going to repair this? There’s not a Democrat that I know of that doesn’t think it needs to be fixed,” Manchin said. “But there’s going to be a lot of harm that can be done, so I can’t say it’s dead on arrival, but they don’t have 60 votes.”
“So it’s dead on arrival,” a reporter said.
Manchin shrugged, laughing.
— POLITICO Live (@POLITICOLive) May 4, 2017