Jerry Moran
American politician US Senator Jerry Moran attends a Senate Environment and Public Works Committee hearing, Washington DC, January 18, 2017. Getty Images/ Mark Reinstein

Despite Senate Republicans releasing a revised version of the Obamacare replacement bill last week, senators Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Jerry Moran (R-Ks) announced they were voting against the bill, effectively stopping its passage for the time being.

The announcement came Monday, after the vote on the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA) was delayed due to Sen. John McCain’s (R-Az) surgery. Both Lee and Moran stated they would not even back a motion to proceed — a procedural vote that would start a debate on the bill. The conservative senators have recently expressed their reservations to various aspects of the amended BCRA.

Read: Senate Healthcare Bill Could Increase Premature Deaths In US, Report Claims

After Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) endorsed the recent version of the bill, everyone expected Lee, who is a longtime ally and original co-author of the bill, to do the same. The bill included an amendment introduced by Cruz — Consumer Freedom Amendment — that allows insurers to offer skinnier plans with fewer benefits as long as they offer more robust Obamacare-compliant plans.

According to Lee, this amendment wasn't enough, which he cited as one of the reasons for withdrawl of support. He was also unhappy that the bill did not repeal Obamacare all the way.

In his statement to withdraw support from the bill, he said: “Millions of middle-class families are being forced to pay billions in higher health insurance premiums to help those with pre-existing conditions. In addition to not repealing all of the Obamacare taxes, the bill doesn't go far enough in lowering premiums for middle class families; nor does it create enough free space from the most costly Obamacare regulations. The full, original version of the Consumer Freedom Amendment is the best chance we can give them.”

Meanwhile, Moran in his statement talked about how the current version of the bill was yielded by a closed door process. He added: “The bill fails to repeal the Affordable Care Act or address healthcare’s rising costs. For the same reasons I could not support the previous version of this bill, I cannot support this one.”

Many in the state of Kansas, including the Kansas Hospital Association opposed the bill vehemently. Moran too, in speeches across the state has publicly talked about the pitfalls of the Republican healthcare bill.

Read: GOP Healthcare Bill Does Not Properly Repeal Obamacare, Conservative Republican Senators Reportedly Say

In June, he talked on the subject of health insurance at a town hall meeting in a village in western Kansas saying: "It's worthy of a national debate that includes legislative hearings,” adding, “it needs to be less politics and more policy." Moran also opposed the Cruz amendment, saying changes make the bill worse for Kansans suffering from serious health problems.

The announcement left Senate Republicans at least two votes short of the number needed to begin debate on their bill to dismantle the health law. Two other Republican senators, Rand Paul of Kentucky and Susan Collins of Maine, have already said they would not support a procedural step to begin debate.