As you’ve probably seen by now, the vote to proceed with debate on the mysterious BCRA healthcare bill was a 50-50 tie today, and went forward with the approval of Mike Pence’s tiebreaker vote. The Republicans could afford two defections, and that’s exactly how many there were—Susan Collins (R-ME) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) were as good as their word, and voted to table the bill without debate.
Now, when we look to cast blame for this, obviously every Republican who voted yes bears equal responsibility. But as of one week ago, it looked like three Republicans would defect. And if you want to pick out one villain, look no further than West Virginia’s Shelley Moore Capito. A week ago, she tweeted this:
These were her concerns:
Now, did this new version ensure access to affordable health care in West Virginia, combat the opioid epidemic, protect Medicaid, or take care of rural health providers?
No—and I know that because there has been no update to the last bill! Nobody knows what they’re voting for!
But Sen. Capito changed her vote anyway. She lacked the courage to stand by her word, she folded like a cheap suit, and now this damaging health care bill is that much closer to passing.