Forty-six days after the AHCA was initially introduced, House Republicans passed the bill with 217-213 votes on May 4. A majority of 216 votes were needed to pass the bill among the 431 members in attendance.
The Republicans have been promising to repeal and replace Obamacare for approximately seven years, but they’ve been unable to agree upon one proposal until now. By passing in the House, the AHCA is headed to the Senate, where it is expected to undergo many revisions.
Exactly 217 Republicans voted in favor of the bill, while 20 others voted against it. Every Democrat voted against the bill, with one representative from each party withholding his vote.
An analysis of the original bill was performed by the CBO, but numerous amendments have been made since. The CBO projected that 24 million additional U.S. residents would be uninsured by 2026. The analysis also stated that it would “reduce the deficit by $337 billion, compared to the Affordable Care Act. The bill also restructures Medicaid payments to the states, reducing federal spending,” according to ABC News.
Following the Republican Party’s victory, President Donald Trump hosted a press conference alongside Vice President Mike Pence and House Republicans at the White House Rose Garden. He praised the House and described the victory, saying, “This has really brought the Republican Party together. As much as we’ve come up with a really incredible health care plan, this has brought the Republican Party together. We’re going to get this finished.”