CAPITOL HILL — House Republicans passed President Trump’s Obamacare replacement bill Thursday.
The “Opt Out” bill was supported by the House Freedom Caucus, which derailed the White House’s previous replacement bill because it too closely mirrored Obamacare.
Republicans reached the magic number of 216 Yea votes at 2:18 PM Eastern.
After convening meetings with Senator Rand Paul, Trump backed the new bill, and Republicans marched largely in lockstep, despite some moderate and establishment Republican backlash on the Hill this week.
Notably, House Speaker Paul Ryan did not thank the president in his remarks before the vote, but rather praised Vice President Pence, Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, and others.
Trump announced a Republican victory press conference in the White House Rose Garden before the vote count was called. House Republicans planned to get on buses, which were ready to go, to take them to the Rose Garden. Republicans also had cases of beer ready for the celebration.
Democrats chanted their disapproval for the vote count after the results were gaveled.
The bill gained two Democratic votes before the count was gaveled. CBS News Radio correspondent Steven Portnoy immediately said on air on CBSN that it could be an electronic “mistake,” and that Democrats should keep their eye on that to potentially correct the “mistake.” One of the Democrats then switched his/her vote, prompting Portnoy to note the correction of the “error” and remark that the vote is not over. The other Democrat then pulled their Yea vote.
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