The 80-year-old Arizona senator John McCain is enjoying high levels of approval from many voters — just not those in his own party.
A new Quinnipiac poll showed 39% of Republican voters held a positive view of McCain and 49% held a negative view. By contrast, Democratic voters hold a 74% positive view of McCain compared to 18% negative, for a plus-56 net rating.
McCain’s vote against the bill delivered a major setback for Republicans who have spent seven years vowing to repeal and replace Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act. He said he’s repeated many times that one of the “major failures” of ObamaCare was that it was “rammed through Congress by Democrats on a strict party-line basis without a single Republican vote.”
“We should not make the mistakes of the past that has led to ObamaCare’s collapse, including in my home state of Arizona, where premiums are skyrocketing and health care providers are fleeing the marketplace,”
According to the Congressional Budget Office, the skinny repeal bill would have resulted in 16 million more uninsured Americans by 2026 than under the current baseline.
McCain’s vote left his fellow Republicans in shock. They thought the skinny bill was what one person called a “shirts and skins exercise,” designed to pit Republicans against Democrats and prevail on party lines. Several senators could barely speak after the party’s seven-year quest to gut Obamacare had seemingly ended in the middle of the night, with their war hero colleague traveling thousands of miles to kill their best shot at rolling back the law.
McCain said he was “confident” that a healthcare bill could be put before Trump to sign by the end of the year.
“I believe that there’s no doubt in anybody’s mind that we can put in the right fixes,” he said. “And the best way to do that – have a committee, and by the way I’m not a member of that committee — put it through the committee, have the debate, have the amendments, put out a product, bring it to the floor, have more amendments, and then when we have the final vote, then it would carry. The normal way we’re supposed to do business.”