McConnell delays vote on health care after McCain surgery

FILE - In this July 11, 2017 file photo, Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz. listens on Capitol Hill in Washington, during the committee’s confirmation hearing for Nay Secretary nominee Richard Spencer. Surgeons in Phoenix said they removed a blood clot from above the left eye of McCain. Mayo Clinic Hospital doctors said Saturday, July 15 that McCain underwent a “minimally invasive” procedure to remove the nearly 2-inch (5-centimeter) clot, and that the surgery went “very well.” They said the 80-year-old Republican is resting comfortably at his home in Arizona. Pathology reports are expected in the next several days. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) – Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says he will delay consideration of health care legislation in the Senate, after Sen. John McCain’s announced absence following surgery left Republicans short of votes on their marquee legislation.

McConnell’s Saturday announcement was another setback for GOP efforts to repeal and replace “Obamacare” after years of promises. McConnell issued his statement not long after McCain’s office disclosed he had undergone surgery to remove a blood clot from above his left eye, and had been advised by doctors to stay in Arizona next week  to recover.

With McConnell’s health care legislation already hanging by a thread in the Senate, McCain’s absence meant it would become impossible for the majority leader to round up votes needed to move the bill forward next week as planned.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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