Senate

Senate Rejects First Obamacare Repeal Proposal
Portman and Cruz amendments fail to advance

Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, leaves the meeting after the Senate Republicans' unveiled their new version of health care plan on Thursday, July 13, 2017. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Senate Republicans failed Tuesday evening to overcome an objection from Democrats over updated legislation that would overhaul the U.S. health insurance system.

The amendment, a version of a recent proposal from Republicans to repeal and replace large portions of the 2010 health care law and make sweeping changes to Medicaid, failed 43-57.

Analysis: At Trump Rally, It Was 2016 Again
President mixes fear with bold promises, big boasts before friendly crowd

President Donald Trump speaks during the annual Days of Remembrance Holocaust ceremony in the Capitol Rotunda on April 25, 2017. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

President Donald Trump, echoing his populist 2016 campaign, mixed the politics of fear and bold promises as he returned to the campaign trail Tuesday evening in Ohio.

As he delivered parts of his remarks in Youngstown, it well could have been July 2016 with then-Republican nominee Trump at the podium. The world is more unsafe than ever. The United States has been run for too long by “stupid” politicians. People who wish to Americans harm are pouring over the southern border. Other countries are taking advantage of U.S. workers and consumers.

GOP Hopes for Obamacare Repeal Rest on ‘Skinny’ Bill
Several other Republican proposals expected to fail

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., can now bring up several GOP health care proposals for a vote after corralling the support necessary on Tuesday to bypass a key procedural hurdle. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Senate Republican hopes to overhaul the U.S. health insurance system appear to hinge on the passage of a “skinny” bill that would only repeal a select few provisions in the 2010 health care law.

GOP senators and aides anticipate that several of the other Republican health care proposals expected to be considered by the chamber in the coming days will fail, clearing the way for a package that would likely just repeal the employer and individual mandates and an excise tax on medical device manufacturers.

House Passes Sanctions on Iran, Russia and North Korea
After procedural delays, bill sent to Senate

Speaker Paul D. Ryan, R-Wis., accused Iran, Russia and North Korea of seeking to undermine the United States after the House passed a bill Tuesday aimed at imposing sanctions on the three nations. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

A bill aimed at imposing sanctions on Iran, Russia and North Korea passed the House 419-3 Tuesday after being held up by technical delays for weeks. But its fate in the Senate remains unclear.

The bill was largely lauded by leadership as a bipartisan effort.

‘Disappointed’ Trump Holds Cards Close on Firing Sessions
AG’s recusal from Russia probe ‘unfair to the presidency,’ Trump gripes

Then-Sen. Jeff Sessions campaigns last year with then-GOP nominee Donald Trump. President Trump would not say Tuesday if he intends to fire now-Attorney General Sessions. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file)

President Donald Trump is holding his cards close on whether he intends to fire Jeff Sessions, his hand-picked attorney general he now worries is too “weak” and “beleaguered” to do the job.

“I am very disappointed with the attorney general,” Trump said in the White House Rose Garden during a joint news conference with his Lebanese counterpart. “He should not have recused himself” from the Justice Department’s Russia election investigation “almost immediately after he took office.”

Senate Clears Procedural Motion on House Obamacare Overhaul
Republicans can now hold a vote on several of their own health care bills

Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, talks with reporters in the senate subway before the Senate Policy luncheons in the Capitol on July 25, 2017. She would later vote no on the motion to proceed with the health care bill. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Senate Republicans mustered the support necessary to clear a key procedural hurdle Tuesday that will allow the chamber to hold a vote on several pieces of legislation designed to, in some fashion or another, overhaul the U.S. health insurance system.

Vice President Mike Pence broke a 50-50 tie to clear the Senate motion to proceed with the House-passed bill to repeal and replace the 2010 health care law, after weeks of hand-wringing and backroom deal-making by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

McConnell-Affiliated Group Hits Brooks for Missing Capitol Police Vote
Senate Leadership Fund Attacks Brooks for missing vote for Capitol Police

Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Ala., is receiving criticism for missing a vote to help Capitol Police Officers. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A super PAC affiliated with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is attacking Rep. Mo Brooks for skipping a vote to assist Capitol Police officers.

The Senate Leadership Fund blasted out an email criticizing Brooks, who is running for Senate in the special election in Alabama, for missing votes.

Health Care: Four Make or Break Senators We’re Watching
Capito, Collins, Murkowski and Heller

Left to right: Sens. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, Susan Collins, R-Maine, Dean Heller, R-Nev., and Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va. (Photos by Tom Williams and Bill Clark, composite by Chris Hale/CQ Roll Call)

UPDATE 2:28 p.m., July 25 | Sens. Shelly Moore Capito, R-W.Va. and Dean Heller, R-Nev., have both announced they plan to vote to proceed with the health care bill. Their ayes clear the 50 vote threshold required to proceed, but questions about the package as a whole remain with Senate Parliamentarian Elizabeth MacDonough’s Friday ruling that budget reconciliation rules would be violated in the bill’s current state.

With Sen. John McCain en route to cast a critical health care vote just one week after announcing a brain cancer diagnosis, here are four senators to watch and what they’ve said leading up to Tuesday’s vote: