Senate Republicans have blocked a key provision of President Donald Trump’s healthcare law, forcing the Senate to hold a vote to repeal it.
The decision is expected to affect more than 40 million people, and it would give the Senate a chance to strike a deal to stabilize the healthcare market.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Monday that Republicans could use procedural maneuvers to force a vote on a repeal-only plan, but it remains unclear if the Senate would be able to muster the 60 votes needed to pass it.
President Donald Trump signs an executive order on Jan. 26, 2021.
Trump signed an executive action Jan. 22 that would eliminate a requirement that people with pre-existing conditions be able and willing to buy insurance.
He said at the time that the move would save $400 billion over a decade.
The Supreme Court ruled in March that the requirement violated the Americans with Disabilities Act, which prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities.
The Trump administration appealed that ruling, but the high court issued its own ruling in June that found the law violated the ADA.
The court said the Obama administration had overstepped its bounds when it implemented a mandate for insurance companies to cover people with certain health conditions.
The Supreme Court also ruled that the mandate could not be enforced without a waiver of Congress’ authority.
Trump had said he would seek a Supreme Court decision on the mandate to allow states to decide whether to impose it on their residents.
Trump also announced that he was rescinding a program that provides money to states to pay for coverage of certain low-income Americans.
Trump’s administration has been criticized by insurers, doctors and lawmakers for taking millions of dollars away from people with preexisting conditions.
Democrats have blasted Trump for the move and are urging the Senate and the White House to work together on a replacement.
The House on Monday passed a bill to repeal Obamacare with a simple majority.
The measure also repeals the Medicaid expansion, which provides health coverage to the low- and moderate-income poor.