Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) said on Tuesday she cannot support a bill to repeal Obamacare without a replacement, even though she voted to repeal Obamacare in 2015.
Repealing Obamacare would fulfill a seven-year long promise Republicans made to the American people.
Sen. Capito said in a statement, “My position on this issue is driven by its impact on West Virginians. With that in mind, I cannot vote to repeal Obamacare without a replacement plan that addresses my concerns and the needs of West Virginians.”
The West Virginia senator previously voted for the 2015 reconciliation bill that would have repealed Obamacare if there were a Republican in the White House. The 2015 Obamacare repeal made it to President Obama’s desk and Obama vetoed the bill. Now that Americans voted for Donald Trump to repeal Obamacare, Capito says she cannot vote for a bill that would repeal most of Obamacare.
— Byron York (@ByronYork) July 18, 2017
Sen. Susan Collins also admitted on Tuesday that she will not vote to repeal Obamacare. Sens. Collins and Capito’s opposition to an Obamacare repeal bill puts the bill’s odds of passing through the Senate in dire straits. If roughly 50 Republicans senators support repealing Obamacare, Vice President Mike Pence will have to break the tie. The Senate will also have to wait for Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) to return from his convalescence after he had a blood clot removed from above his left eye. The Senate will remain in session until August 11 to pass necessary legislation before breaking for their August recess.
Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AK) chided Republican senators who might vote against a bill they supported in 2015 when they knew it was largely symbolic, given that Obama planned on vetoing the bill.
Sen. Cotton told radio host Hugh Hewitt on Tuesday, “I don’t see how any Republican senator who voted just 18 months ago for this very piece of legislation could now flip-flop 18 months on with Obamacare still inflicting so much harm on Americans, and the fact that we campaigned on this for four straight elections.”