Hear me out.
Hear me out. Getty/PeopleImages

If you're panicking about today's Senate vote to open debate on Trumpcare, here are two important reminders before you permanently clench your jaw and take to picking at your fingernails until they bleed: The first is that today's vote was a procedural vote. It was the first step in the Senate GOP's deeply ill-advised effort to pass their awful law no one wants. It wasn't the last. We're at the beginning of that process, not the end, and a lot of independent variables are in play right now that could yet complicate the bill's progress.

One of these is the Byrd rule. I wrote about the Byrd rule last Friday. Essentially, it boils down to this: Because the GOP is using budget reconciliation to pass the health care bill, it needs to be in accordance with the Byrd Rule, a list of clear budgetary requirements. In the case of Trumpcare, several of its provisions were found in violation of the Byrd Rule on Friday, which means that they won't be able to pass without 60 Senate votes. Two of these provisions have to do with the GOP's least favorite thing, reproductive rights. The GOP's tacked-on effort to defund Planned Parenthood is one of the provisions that now needs 60 votes to pass. So are two provisions that would prevent premium tax credits and small business tax credits from going towards insurance that covers abortion.

That's good news if you care about reproductive rights, and if you're panicking about health care access, you'd better. (Because let's be real: The GOP's attack on health care access isn't new if you're a woman.)

Recall, also, that the Republicans had quite an embarrassing struggle getting the 50 votes and Mike Pence tiebreaker needed for the bill to even move forward to debate. Getting to 60 seems unlikely. So while it's possible the GOP will find some way to jam through their terrible law no one wants, it's still a long road.

Besides, it's way too easy give up if you're panicking. So don't. Channel that energy into action. Do it now. Your tense jaw will thank you.