Live Updates: Senate GOP secures votes to open debate on health care

Last Updated Jul 26, 2017 10:28 AM EDT


CBS News’ Rebecca Shabad, Emily Tillett and John Nolen have contributed to this developing story.

The Senate will continue voting Wednesday on amendments to the House-passed health care bill. The next series of votes is expected at 11:30 a.m. ET.

Senators voted Tuesday in favor on a motion to proceed with debate on the Senate’s health care plan to effectively repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. On Tuesday night, the Senate Republican plan to repeal and replace the health care law failed on a procedural vote.

Tuesday: Highlights from the votes:

  • After 50 “no” votes on the motion to proceed to debate (including all Democrats plus two Republicans) and 50 “yes” votes from Republicans, Vice President Mike Pence broke the tie
  • Sen. John McCain was welcomed back to Senate with standing ovation, votes “yes”
  • Protesters yell, “Kill the bill, don’t kill us,” disrupting start of vote
  • Senate GOP’s plan to repeal and replace Obamacare, known as BCRA, fails in procedural vote, at about 9:30 p.m.

Live updates from Wednesday below:

McConnell says the rest of the process “certainly won’t be easy”

The Senate majority leader said that the Senate took a “critical step” Tuesday afternoon by opening debate, which he called an “important moment for our country.” He said it signals a positive development for Americans who he said have been suffering under Obamacare’s costs and diminishing options. 

“We’ll work through an open amendment process,” he said on the Senate floor Wednesday morning. “If you’ve got one, bring it to the floor.” 

McConnell said that the Senate considered a comprehensive repeal and replace plan Tuesday night, which failed because it was subject to a 60-vote threshold. 

“We’ll consider many different proposals through this process from senators on both sides of the aisle,” he said. “This certainly won’t be easy — hardly anything in this process has been.” 

2015 Obamacare repeal bill up for vote at 11:30 a.m. ET

The Senate will first vote at 11:30 a.m. ET on a measure resembling a 2015 Senate-passed bill that would repeal Obamacare, but delay it for two years so that they can come up with a replacement plan. Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, is the only sitting Senate Republican among the two defections on that bill two years ago. The other was former Sen. Mark Kirk, R-Illinois. 

At 3:30 p.m., the Senate will continue voting on a motion to recommit from Sen. Joe Donnelly, D-Indiana. 

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