Republican Senator Susan Collins announced she is a “no” vote on the Graham-Cassidy health care bill, effectively ending the latest half-baked GOP effort to come up with something on health care that they can label a replacement for the Affordable Care Act. The Maine Senator joins Sens. McCain and Rand Paul in publicly opposing the bill authored by South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham and Louisiana Sen. Bill Cassidy. In a statement Monday evening, Collins outlined her policy concerns with the new bill, but also criticized the slapdash way the bill was composed. "Sweeping reforms to our health care system and to Medicaid can't be done well in a compressed time frame, especially when the actual bill is a moving target,” Collins said in a statement. “The fact that a new version of this bill was released the very week were are supposed to vote compounds the problem.”
Collins’ objections to the bill were well known, particularly the potential rolling back of coverage for lower income Americans and those with preexisting conditions. With Collins officially in the “no” column, and a handful of other Republicans still wavering, there doesn’t appear to be a road to the 50 votes needed by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to pass the bill by Saturday. Collins joined Sen. McCain and Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski in voting against the GOP’s earlier repeal bill in July.