Amid huge lingering doubts about its fate, Senate Republican leaders took their best shot a repealing portions of Obamacare early Friday morning and failed . The legislation was voted down 49-51.
Even as the voted continued to be tallied, it became apparent the bill would be sunk as Republican Sens. Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and John McCain of Arizona voted no early during the balloting.
The vote was the third time in three days that Republicans failed to coalesce around a way to repeal and replace Obamacare.
President Donald Trump took to Twitter to voice his annoyance over the result.
"This is clearly a disappointing moment," said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell after the voting closed.
"It's time to move on," McConnell said.
The Kentucky Republican also called on Democrats to unveil what they have in mind when it comes to improving the ACA.
Democratic leader Charles Schumer of New York said, "We are not celebrating, we are relieved." Passage would have meant adding millions to the ranks of the uninsured.
- GOP's 'Skinny Repeal' Will Probably Hit You Badly in the Pocket in 2018
He called on McConnell to return to regular order, meaning rather than having Senate leaders craft a bill in private, to instead let the various committees craft legislation in a bipartisan way.
The bill, formally named the Health Care Freedom Act, but nicknamed "skinny repeal," was unveiled shortly before the Senate was slated to vote on the legislation. The bill would have repealed the Affordable Care Act's individual mandate to purchase insurance, repealed the employer mandate to provide insurance, defunded Planned Parenthood for one year, given states more flexibility to opt out of insurance regulations, and repealed the medical device tax over three years. It also would have raised limits on Health Savings Account contributions.
In the lead up to votes on the package, the Congressional Budget Office provided lawmakers an analysis of the bill's impact on the deficit, insurance premiums and the ranks of the uninsured. The GOP issued only the portion showing that the bill would decrease the projected federal deficit by $142 billion through 2026.
When Republicans balked, the Democrats released portions of the CBO estimates showing that 16 million people would lose their health insurance in 2018 and premiums would rise 20% annually over the next decade.
More of What's Trending on TheStreet: