Relieved Republicans have pushed their prized health care bill through the House. The mostly party-line 217-213 vote advances a bill that addresses their longtime pledge to erase the 2010 Obama health care law.
Thursday’s vote sends the measure to the Senate. Many senators consider the House bill too harsh and it’s expected to undergo substantial changes.
The House measure collapsed in March due to opposition by conservative and moderate GOP lawmakers. House leaders abandoned another attempt to pass the bill last week after support was lacking.
Leaders finally rounded up enough support after adding money aimed at helping seriously ill patients afford their medical costs.
Democrats said the bill would kick millions off coverage. They predicted Republicans would pay the price in next year’s elections.
The Charleston County Democratic Party released the following statement after Republican Congressman Mark Sanford voted for the measure:
“Congressman Sanford just voted to increase premiums and strip health insurance coverage from thousands of constituents in the first congressional district. For the next 18 months we will be sure that the mothers and fathers he voted against are reminded of Sanford’s terrible vote today.”
U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina, says Democrats have refused to face up to the fact that Obamacare is on the verge of collapse.
“I look forward to carefully reviewing the House-passed legislation to repeal and replace Obamacare,” Graham said. “My primary duty and job is to ensure this bill – if it were to become law – would be beneficial to the people of South Carolina.”