Senate Republican leaders may not be able to muster the votes needed to pass the latest version of “repeal and replace,” after Sen. Susan Collins (R-Me.) said she couldn’t envision voting for the bill. “It’s very difficult for me to imagine a scenario where I would end up voting for this bill,” Ms. Collins said Sunday on CNN. Senator Rand Paul (R-KY.) has also outlined tough demands to secure his vote on this bill.
As a reminder, the Senate Republicans are attempting to pass this bill under the “reconciliation” process, needing only Republican votes to pass. As with prior attempts, the Senate Republicans do not appear to be able to secure the votes from their own party. Saturday is the deadline for the reconciliation procedure, so the pressure is on. If the votes are not there, Senate leaders could push for a vote anyway to force all Senators to declare their positions. Therefore, while the bill may be dead, the votes may come back to haunt the Senators next election cycle.