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Health Care Vote Process

published by ANCOR

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The Health Care Bill:
Understanding the Vote Process
The health care vote is going through a special process called "reconciliation." Here is what you need to know on the steps the Senate must take in order to vote on the bill this week.
Step 1
The Process Begins
Before any discussion can start on the bill, there must be a procedural vote to allow debate. This is where we ask Senators to VOTE NO.
If a majority votes yes, the bill moves to debate.
Debate Time!
Senators will have 20 hours to discuss the bill and make speeches.
During this stage of the process, we would ask Senate allies to make floor speeches about the importance of Medicaid.
Step 2
If a majority vote no, Leadership either moves on to another issue or tries again in the future.
Step 3
Side note
During this time, Senators from both parties offer and vote on amendments in rapid succession with minimal debate. This has included "poison pill" amendments in the past.
While it would be controversial, Senate Republican Leader McConnell can choose to only allow himself to place amendments.
After the 20 hours of debate, Senate Leadership begins a process called "Vote-a-Rama."
A Flood of Amendments...
10 clauses in the BCRA are not Byrd Rule compliant. These will need to be addressed if the BCRA is brought up for a vote.
Byrd Bath/Droppings:
Yes, it's actually called that. Because the budget process is expedited and only requires a simple majority to pass a bill, a budget bill must be clearly tied to budget issues. This is called the Byrd Rule.
This decision process is called the Byrd Bath, the decisions are called Byrd Droppings.
Step 4
The End of the (Senate) Line.
At the end of this process, the Senate will vote on the final health care bill. It only needs 51 votes to pass, with Vice President Pence able to serve as tie-breaker.
Step 5
Possible Switch-a-Roo?
At the very end of Vote-A-Rama, Senator McConnell can choose to switch out the bill that received all the amendments with another bill.
He is widely expected to do so, proposing a straight Obamacare repeal bill then changing it to a bill which includes Medicaid cuts such as the BCRA or AHCA.
This would be time for a final push for your Senators to VOTE NO.
If the bill passes the Senate, it is widely expected to pass the House, go to the President, receive his signature and become law.
The Finale.
End.
Your advocacy matters - contact your Senators to vote no on the procedural vote!
For more resources:
visit www.disabilitysos.org.