Lee, whose office said he was undecided up until the vote occurred near midnight Utah time Friday, didn't mince words in a statement about the Republicans' efforts to repeal or change the Affordable Care Act. Susan Collins of ME and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, as well as 46 of the chamber's Democrats and both of its independents to defeat the so-called Health Care Freedom Act. The surprise "no" vote, though, came from Arizona Senator John McCain, who came back to the Senate this week after a diagnosis of brain cancer.
In fact, the Republicans really needed only 50 votes in the health care debate because Vice President Pence could have provided a tie-breaker.
"I don't understand why they had to push for health care reform before tax reform", he said.
"Many great Republican bills will never pass, like Kate's Law and complete Healthcare. It is now time to return to regular order with input from all of our members - Republicans and Democrats - and bring a bill to the floor of the Senate for amendment and debate".
The president on Saturday afternoon told GOP senators not to vote on any other bill until healthcare is passed.
President Trump, who campaigned for the White House on promises to repeal Obamacare, has offered no legislation of his own and little guidance to the Senate, although he has berated them for their inaction.
Almost two-thirds of the country wants to either keep or modify the Affordable Care Act, popularly known as Obamacare, and a majority of Americans want Congress to turn its attention to other priorities, the survey found.
One Republican said President Trump shares some of the blame for the bill's failure. "Now we need to find the good ideas", said Vigdor. McConnell has repeatedly said he would not change any rules. We encourage our elected officials to look beyond politics and work together to seek solutions that fix the gaps in the current law and ensure that all Americans have access to affordable health care coverage.
"How is [McConnell] going to get the job done on the rest of President Trump's agenda?" Lindsey Graham of SC and Ron Johnson of Wisconsin in a press conference in which they demanded the House not pass the exact text they would be voting to move forward.
Republicans not only killed efforts to dismantle Obamacare, but also joined Democrats in supporting a new sanctions regime against Russian Federation. "We must do the hard work our citizens expect of us and deserve".