WASHINGTON (CBSMiami) – Republicans in the House secured just enough votes on Thursday to pass their plan to repeal and replace Obamacare.
Now the battle moves to the Senate where it may be tough to find enough votes for passage.
President Donald Trump was all smiles after the House passed the American Health Care Act by just one vote.
“We’re gonna get this passed through the Senate, I feel so confident,” he said during a news conference after the vote.
On Friday he took to Twitter to again express confidence that the GOP’s plan to repeal and replace Obamacare would pass in the Senate.
Big win in the House – very exciting! But when everything comes together with the inclusion of Phase 2, we will have truly great healthcare!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 5, 2017
But not all Republicans share that confidence. Both moderates and conservatives in the Senate have problems with the House bill, but for opposite reasons.
Moderate Senators Rob Portman of Ohio and Dean Heller of Nevada have both come out against the bill because of the cap on Medicaid expansion.
“I continue to have concerns that this bill does not do enough to protect Ohio’s Medicaid expansion population,” said Portman.
“We cannot pull the rug out from under states like Nevada that expanded Medicaid,” said Heller.
On the other side of the coin are conservatives, like Kentucky’s Rand Paul, who oppose the government subsidies which help people buy insurance.
“There’s hundreds of billions of dollars that will be transferred from the American taxpayers to the insurance companies,” said Paul.
To help thread that needle, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has appointed Senator Lamar Alexander to convene a working group with both sides to come up with a compromise. The Alexander working group held two meetings looking at options even before the House passed its bill. Senators say it will be weeks before they could bring any kind of bill up for a vote.