A GOP push to overhaul and reshape the U.S. health care system in the coming months is being put on hold in Congress after a number of lawmakers pulled out of the talks, according to a new report.
Rep. Pete Sessions, R-Texas, was the first to announce his retirement from Congress last month.
But House Speaker Paul Ryan, R, Wisconsin, said Thursday he is postponing the House’s vote on the measure that would create a single-payer health insurance system in 2026.
And Sen. Lindsey Graham, R., South Carolina, said he will vote against the measure, which is backed by President Donald Trump.
“We’re still in a position where we have to make a decision on what the next steps should be,” Graham told reporters Thursday.
“But I am not going to vote on it.”
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R.-Calif., said he would not bring the Senate health care legislation up for a vote until at least Monday.
House GOP leaders had hoped to pass the measure by the end of the month, but they were pushed off a key procedural vote Thursday that would have required two-thirds support in the Senate.
“It’s a little bit of a political death knell for the effort, but I don’t think it’s that serious,” McCarthy said.
“We’re going to make the best of it.”
The measure would create an insurance marketplace where consumers buy insurance on a government-run exchange and businesses could choose to either have their health plans sold on the exchanges or pay a small tax to cover premiums.
It is unclear what House Republican leaders plan to do with the legislation once it reaches the Senate floor.
But one possibility is to pass it as an amendment to an unrelated bill that would repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare.
Democrats would need at least three votes to overcome the procedural hurdle and pass the legislation.