Merkley applauds failure of health care repeal

WASHINGTON – Senator Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., released the following statement after Senate Republicans held a failed vote on their health care repeal bill early Friday:

“Thanks to the steadfast advocacy of millions of Americans and the political courage of a few Republican Senators, the latest repeal bill is dead, as it ought to be.  The process that produced it is an embarrassment to the United States Senate.  Worse, it shared the same fundamental problem as the previous plans: No matter which way you slice it, millions of Americans would lose health care. That’s unacceptable and indefensible.

“I have profound respect for the three Republican Senators who joined us in protecting health care for the American people— Senators McCain, Murkowski, and Collins.

“Democrats and Republicans should now come together to look for ways to improve our existing health care system— to improve the options available to all Americans, to lower prescription drug prices, and to continue reducing the number of people lacking insurance.                

“Ultimately, today’s victory is a testament to the incredible work of millions of Americans who rallied at the grassroots level to save health care for their families and their communities. They took action fearlessly—from telling their most personal stories to lawmakers, to staging rallies and sit-ins across the country—and this victory is their victory.”