Trump praises Senate for taking up health care

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on the effort by congressional Republicans to pass a health care bill:

3:35 p.m.

President Donald Trump is praising the Senate for moving forward on health care repeal.

He says a vote Tuesday to take up the Republican health care bill “was a big step.”

Trump is speaking at a joint press conference with Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri.

Trump is also thanking Arizona Sen. John McCain, who returned to Washington his brain cancer diagnosis, to cast a vote.

Trump adds that he wants “to congratulate the American people” because better health care is on the way.

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3:10 p.m.

The Senate has voted to move ahead on health care legislation aimed at dismantling the Obama health law.

The vote was 51-50 on Tuesday, a victory for Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and President Donald Trump. Last week, McConnell was forced to postpone the vote, lacking the support of conservatives and moderates.

Vice President Mike Pence cast the tie-breaking vote.

In a dramatic turn, Sen. John McCain returned from Arizona where he is battling brain cancer to cast a crucial vote on proceeding on health care.

The vote sets up days of debate and votes on repealing and replacing Barack Obama’s health care law. Whatever the Senate approves still requires a vote in the House.

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