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McConnell Calls for Full Repeal of Obamacare. Here’s How it Went in 2015.

After his Obamacare replacement bill failed, Mitch McConnell wants to vote on a full repeal of Obamacare. Here’s how that vote went down in December 2015.

The Affordable Care Act

The Senate’s Obamacare replacement bill – the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA) – died before it ever received a vote, after two more GOP senators came out against the bill on Monday night.

Sens. Mike Lee (R-UT) and Jerry Moran (R-KS) became the third and fourth senators to oppose the bill, and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) could only afford to lose two senators on BCRA.

Hours after Lee and Moran announced their opposition, McConnell announced his next step: a vote to debate the House’s replacement bill – the American Health Care Act (AHCA) – with one big, first amendment: immediate repeal of Obamacare.

Here’s how that vote went down in 2015, and how a 2017 vote could be tougher for McConnell than 2015.


The Senate vote that McConnell mentioned in his statement happened on December 3, 2015. The GOP-controlled Senate voted 52-47 in favor of H.R. 3762, the “Restoring Americans’ Healthcare Freedom Reconciliation Act of 2015,” which fully repealed Obamacare.

Fifty-two of 54 Republican senators voted for repeal, with two senators – Susan Collins (R-ME) and the now-ousted Mark Kirk (R-IL) – voting against repeal.


Assuming Collins votes against full repeal again, McConnell can’t afford to lose two more votes. Some of the moderate GOP senators who were uneasy with BCRA’s Medicaid cuts may also be uneasy about the cuts in full repeal, including:

  • Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV)
  • Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV)
  • Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK)
  • Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH)

As The Washington Post‘s Sean Sullivan pointed out on Tuesday morning, conservatives like Lee and Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Rand Paul (R-KY) may be less likely to vote to proceed on AHCA if they think moderates will torch full repeal anyway.

Keep up with NTK Network as we track the GOP’s Obamacare repeal and replacement efforts.