Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R-KY) future rests on the Senate passing a tax reform bill after failing to pass an Obamacare repeal bill.
The House will vote on the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act on Thursday, a tax reform bill that features massive tax cuts for the middle-class and small businesses. Most pundits expect the bill to pass through the House. Rep. Dennis Ross (R-FL), a member of House Majority Whip Steve Scalise’s (R-LA) vote-counting operation, said, “It’s more than just a tax bill. It will show that Republicans can get things done.”
However, Mitch McConnell will face more dire circumstances passing a tax reform bill through the Senate than the House.
Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) became the first Republican senator to openly oppose the Tax Cuts and Jobs on Wednesday. Republicans hold a 52-seat majority in the Senate, McConnell can only afford to lose two Republican senators and have Vice President Mike Pence break the tie in the upper chamber.
Senate Republicans announced that they will include a repeal of Obamacare’s individual mandate in their version of the tax bill. At the moment, Sens. John McCain (R-AZ), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), or Susan Collins (R-ME) have not announced that they oppose the individual mandate’s repeal, although, that has not stopped these three senators from mounting a last-minute stand against the tax bill, as they did with Obamacare repeal twice in 2017.
McCain repeatedly said that he wants a comprehensive, bipartisan solution to replacing Obamacare; the Arizona senator contends that one of the most significant problems with Obamacare was that Democrats passed the Affordable Care ACt on partisan lines.
The Republican’s slim majority in the upper chamber led to McConnell’s failure to repeal Obamacare. McConnell failed to pass the Senate leadership’s Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA), the “skinny” repeal of Obamacare, Sen. Rand Paul’s (R-KY) clean repeal of Obamacare, and the Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) block-grant repeal of Obamacare.
Republicans remain desperate to pass a significant piece of legislation before the 2018 midterm elections.
Conservatives and populists alike have mounted a rebellion against Mitch McConnell and the rest of Senate leadership for their inability to pass President Donald Trump’s agenda, which includes repealing Obamacare, cutting taxes, confirming over 200 Trump federal and judicial nominees, and funding a southern border wall.
The Tea Party Patriots, FreedomWorks, and the Senate Conservatives Fund called for McConnell and the rest of the Senate leadership to resign over their inability to pass any significant legislation.
Alabama Judge Roy Moore, who is running for the open Alabama Senate seat, called on McConnell to resign, saying, “He has failed conservatives and must be replaced.”
A November revealed that 33 percent of Kentucky voters approve of Mitch McConnell.
Former White House chief strategist and Breitbart News executive chairman Steve Bannon told the New York Times that McConnell and his allies have been “the most outrageous” in their failure to support President Donald Trump and added that McConnell “has to go.”
Bannon added, “It’s not my personal mission but I have an objective that Mitch McConnell will not be majority leader and I believe it will be done before this time next year.”