John McCain blood clot surgery delays healthcare reform vote

Sen. John Mc Cain Has Surgery to Remove Blood Clot Above Eye

Sen. John Mc Cain Has Surgery to Remove Blood Clot Above Eye

McCain, 80, underwent a procedure on Friday to remove a blood clot from his eye and is recovering at home in Arizona where he will likely be for the week.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced tonight that he is delaying the vote on the Republican bill to repeal and "replace" ObamaCare.

Mayo Clinic Hospital doctors said yesterday that McCain underwent a "minimally invasive" procedure to remove the almost 2-inch clot, and that the surgery went "very well". "He is in good spirits and recovering comfortably at home with his family", McCain's office said.

The announcements, first by McCain, then by McConnell, dealt another setback to the effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act, which once seemed inevitable after years of promises by congressional Republican leaders that they would dismantle it. In addition to two announced GOP "no" votes from moderate Susan Collins of ME and conservative Rand Paul of Kentucky, there were at least a half-dozen other Republican senators who were withholding support from or expressing reservations about the bill McConnell released Thursday. McCain is expected to miss at least a week of work as he recovers from his operation at the Mayo Clinic Hospital in Arizona, and his absence will overlap with the expected CBO score of the new Trumpcare legislation which should come out on Monday.

Any delay in the Senate will give critics more time to mobilise opposition to the bill.

It's uncertain whether McCain would vote in favor of the current bill, but he said in a statement on Thursday that he planned to file amendments to protect Arizona's Medicaid program. McConnell has had a more hard time rounding up support in the Senate.

Four other more moderate Senators - Portman of Ohio, Murkowski of Alaska, Capito of West Virginia and Heller of Nevada remain undecided about their votes.

"Have no doubt", McCain said in a statement.

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