There was shock in the halls of the US Capitol early Friday morning (Jul. 28) as the latest efforts to repeal the Obama administration’s landmark Affordable Care Act failed in dramatic fashion.
Arizona senator John McCain, who is currently battling brain cancer, had flown back to Washington days earlier to initially vote with his fellow Republicans in favor of measures that pushed the legislation forward. But this morning, he reversed course and cast the deciding “no” vote, joining Republicans Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and quashed their party’s hopes of undoing Obamacare.
The Washington Post reports (paywall):
McCain emerged from his talks with Pence at 1:29 a.m., approached the Senate clerk and gave a thumbs down — casting the third GOP “no” vote. His decision sparked stunned gasps and some applause.
The faces of GOP lawmakers following the vote tell the story. Texas senator Ted Cruz, a Republican presidential hopeful in 2016, walked out of the chamber in disgruntled defeat, hands in pockets, after the votes were cast. Murkowski, despite helping to bring down the so-called “Skinny Repeal,” was in no mood for celebration either. McCain, receiving plenty of media plaudits for finally regaining his “maverick” title, was trailed by a large gaggle of reporters