According to Politico, the decision was reached at a party lunch Tuesday after it became clear the plan would fail. Three Senate Republicans had already said they would vote against the measure, and the GOP could only afford two defections.
"We don't have the votes so it's probably best we don't do the vote," said Republican Sen. Steve Daines of Montana. "We've lost this battle, but we're going to win the war."
"Why have a vote if you know what the outcome is and it's not what you want. I don't know what you gain from that. But I do believe that the health care issue is not dead, and that's what counts," said GOP Sen. Richard Shelby of Alabama. "We've got some time this year to deal with it and I think we have to."
Vice President Mike Pence told Republicans they should keep working on health care and not give up just because a key procedural deadline to pass the bill with a simple majority expires after Sept. 30.