115th Congress, Vote 26; Senate #3
A budget resolution to begin the process of repealing the ACA.
Official Title: A concurrent resolution setting forth the congressional budget for the United States Government for fiscal year 2017 and setting forth the appropriate budgetary levels for fiscal years 2018 through 2026.
S.Con.Res.3: A budget resolution to begin the process of repealing the ACA
Passed by Senate January 12, 2017, 51-48 (1 not voting).
Synopsis: There are 52 Republicans in the Senate in 2017. That's enough to pass a bill with a simple majority, but not enough to overcome a Senate filibuster, which is certain to be mounted if legislation is introduced to fully repeal the ACA.
In order to get around that, Republicans have opted to use reconciliation legislation, which can only address federal spending, but can be passed with a simple majority (51 votes) in the Senate. Their plan is to use a reconciliation bill to repeal spending-related aspects of the ACA (while leaving non-spending-related parts of the law unchanged), and then introduce replacement legislation in the subsequent days/weeks/months (the exact timing is very much up in the air).
They already did a trial run of this in 2015/2016 with H.R.3762. That legislation - a reconciliation bill to repeal spending-related aspects of the ACA - passed the House and Senate, but was vetoed by President Obama and didn't have the votes to overcome the veto.
Now that Republicans control Congress and the White House, their reconciliation bill stands a much better chance of passing.
S.Con.Res.3 sounds like a major budget bill, but its purpose was simply to provide instructions to four congressional committees, so that they could begin drafting reconciliation legislation to repeal the ACA (similar to H.R.3762).
The committees tasked with drafting the repeal legislation include two in the House:
In addition, Enzi's summary of S.Con.Res.3 explains that the resolution also includes "reserve funds necessary to accommodate legislation to repeal and replace Obamacare. These authorities permit the Budget Committee Chairs to adjust resolution figures as needed to accommodate patient-centered health care reform legislation in the future."
S.Con.Res.3 called for the four committees to report back to the Budget Committee by January 27, but lawmakers noted that there would be flexibility in that scheduling, and that it wasn't a hard deadline.
S.Con.Res.3 is a non-binding budget resolution. That means it doesn't get sent to the president for a signature, and doesn't become law. None of the 190 amendments that were proposed for S.Con.Res.3 received enough votes to be added to the resolution, but the nonbinding nature of the budget resolution would have made them meaningless even if they had been added (they were introduced symbolically, and served to get Republicans on record as voting against a variety of popular consumer protections that are in the ACA).
|01/12/2017||Status: Senate concurrent resolution agreed to|
More: select a member to see his or her other key health care votes.
|D||Chris Van Hollen||MD|
|D||C. Cortez Masto||NV|
|Not Voting (1)|