Thursday/ Republicans: Go home! (and don’t come back)

The latest incarnation of the poisonous Senate healthcare bill, courtesy of Mitch McConnell, was called the Healthcare Freedom Act (frees one up to die with no healthcare).  Slapped together in a day or two, all of eight pages.  Published only on Thursday.  Not a single hearing.  Per the Congressional Budget Office it would force 16 million people off health insurance coverage, increase premiums 20% for people with insurance. Yet Mitch McConnell has the nerve to bring it up in the dead of night, with VP Mike Pence on hand, to cast a potential tie-breaking vote, if the Senate had voted 50-50.

In a scene of high drama, after impassioned pleas from Democrats to vote ‘No’, the roll-call vote finally comes. 49 of 52 Republican senators vote ‘Yes’ (just not John McCain, Lisa Murkowski, Susan Collins). The bill fails by the narrowest of margins: 49-51

So: the Senate Republicans demonstrated vividly how careless, how rotten to the core they are, as policymakers and as legislators. Go home, and never come back!

Buzzfeed’s mark-up of the dramatic scene in the Senate.  It’s 1.29 am on Friday morning in the Senate. McConell, arms folded, looks on as John McCain makes sure the Senate clerk sees him doing a thumbs-down, signaling his no vote.

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