The Senate voted 51-48 early this morning to advance a budget resolution starting the process of repealing the Affordable Care Act, with only Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) crossing party lines. Democrats forced roughly seven hours of mostly symbolic votes, and GOP senators withdrew an amendment that would have formally given more time to lawmakers crafting forthcoming reconciliation legislation that would repeal the law. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said yesterday that Democrats intend to ensure that Republicans are held responsible for any chaos caused by ending the ACA. “Put this irresponsible and rushed repeal plan aside,” Schumer said on the Senate floor. “Work with us Democrats on a way to improve health care in America, not put chaos in place of affordable care.” In his news conference yesterday, President-elect Donald Trump insisted that repeal would not occur without a replacement plan. “Obamacare is the Democrats’ problem. We’re going to take the problem off the shelves for them. We’re doing them a tremendous favor,” Trump said.
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