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Senate votes to start health care debate

J. Scott Applewhite / AP

The Senate has officially taken up legislation to repeal the Affordable Care Act — overcoming a hurdle Republicans weren't sure they could clear just a few days ago. Fifty Republican senators voted to start the debate, with Vice President Mike Pence breaking the tie.

How it happened: Sens. Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski, sitting next to each other in the Senate chamber, voted against the motion, along with all 46 Democrats and two Democrat-leaning independents. Protesters in the galleries shouted "Kill the bill! Don't kill us!" and "Shame!"

The big moment: The standing ovation for Sen. John McCain as he walked in to vote for the motion.