McConnell Announces Senate Vote On O’Care Repeal ‘Early Next Week’

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., listens during a news conference after the Senate confirmed President Donald Trump's controversial education secretary nominee, Betsy DeVos, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2017. DeVos was approved by the narrowest of margins, with Vice President Mike Pence breaking a 50-50 tie in a historic vote. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
J. Scott Applewhite/AP

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) on Tuesday said he will hold a Senate vote on a Republican proposal to repeal Obamacare next week, though he currently does not have the support of enough senators for the legislation to proceed.

“At the request of the President and vice president and after consulting with our members, we will have the vote on the motion to proceed to the Obamacare repeal bill early next week,” McConnell announced on the Senate floor.

Within a day of McConnell announcing his proposal to let members vote for a “repeal only” amendment to the House bill, three senators said they will vote against bringing the bill to the floor.

Sens. Lisa Murkowksi (R-AK), Susan Collins (R-ME) and Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) announced that they will vote against a motion to proceed. Their defections left the proposal dead before coming to a vote.

Earlier Tuesday afternoon McConnell acknowledged to reporters that Republican leadership “simply” does not have “50 senators who can agree on what ought to replace the existing law.”

He nevertheless said the Senate would vote “sometime in the near future” on a bill to repeal Obamacare without a replacement, which would force senators to register a vote for or against the legislation regardless of whether it ultimately proceeded or not.