The following is an excerpt from Blaze Media’s Capitol Hill Brief email newsletter:
As expected from the outset, the effort failed by a vote of 43 yeas to 52 nays. The only Republican to cross party lines and vote with Democrats on the pro-regulation vote was Susan Collins of Maine.
Democrats characterized the vote as an effort against so-called “junk insurance” that they say doesn’t provide adequate coverage, while Republicans say that the waivers provide relief to people who have trouble affording health insurance coverage because regulations have made it so expensive. “States have jumped at the opportunity to use waivers to reduce the costs associated with Obamacare’s mandates,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said ahead of the vote. “In the states that have taken advantage, premiums decreased significantly.”
Ultimately, the debate comes down to whether or not people should be free to do their own research and make their own decision to buy less expensive insurance plans that don’t come with as much coverage as other, pricier plans, or whether the government has to step in and remove that choice in the name of consumer protection.