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“I think we should send a strong message today with a great vote against this repeal, which is so harmful to the health of the American people, which is so damaging to our fiscal health as well, and to have people know that we want to have what is best for them,” the California Democrat said on the House floor.

But Rep. David Camp, Michigan Republican, argued that “the American people know that like a tree that is rotten at the center, we must cut it down and put something new in its place.”

“That is what we are doing today — cutting the government out of the waiting room, out of the doctor’s office and out of your medicine cabinet,” Mr. Camp said. “Once we have done that, we will begin tomorrow to implement step-by-step, common-sense reforms that actually lower the cost of health care and actually respect the patient-doctor relationship.”

The next step in the GOP’s plan comes Thursday, when the House is scheduled to take up a resolution that doles out to committees the responsibility of carving out an alternative bill that, among other things, reforms the medical malpractice insurance system, provides access to affordable health care coverage to people with pre-existing conditions and prohibits taxpayer-funded abortions.

“I just think it’s time to listen to the American people and to do this the right way,” Mr. Boehner said. “The Congress can do better in terms of replacing Obamacare with common-sense reforms that will bring down the cost of health insurance and expand access for more Americans.”