On Thursday, the United States Senate voted to repeal the core policies of Obamacare in an effort to dismantle the signature domestic policy of the president. The move was made despite the fact that Obama said he would veto such a repeal.
The Senate voted 52 to 47 to repeal Obamacare, and the Democrats in Congress have enough votes to prevent an override of a veto from Obama. A similar bill has also been passed by the House of Representatives, but the differences between the bills must be dealt with before the legislation can reach President Obama.
Additionally, the bill also contains measures that would deny federal funding for Planned Parenthood. Republicans have long criticized the healthcare organization. In late November, three people were killed in a shooting at Planned Parenthood clinic located in Colorado Springs.
According to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, repealing Obamacare would allow Democrats and Obama to “make amends for the pain and hurt they’ve caused”.
In the House, Republicans have voted more than 50 times in efforts to repeal or delay the legislation. Obamacare was enacted by Congress thanks entirely to votes from Democrats. The current effort represents the first time that Congress has used a procedure that is designed to bypass a filibuster by Democrats of the Senate.
In the most recent vote, every Democratic Senator was against repealing Obamacare. Every Republican Senator except for Susan Collins of Maine and Mark Kirk of Illinois voted to repeal the President’s policy. Still, many Senators admitted that they are wasting their time, since they know Obama will just veto the legislation, and Democrats will support him.
In order to override a veto from the president, at least 60 votes would be needed. There are not enough Republicans in the Senate to make that happen.
Senate Democrat Leader Harry Reid of Nevada said, “Everybody knows it’s just a gesture of futility. We’re wasting our time here today. Everyone knows the result."
According to representatives of Obama, the proposed legislation would “take away critical benefits and health care coverage from hard-working middle-class families.” Twice the United States Supreme Court has upheld key components of Obama’s Affordable Care Act.
Also during Thursday’s session, Senators rejected two new amendments proposed by Democrats that would increase gun controls. The proposals came just one day after 14 people were killed in a mass shooting in San Bernardino, CA.