The GOP's Obamacare retreat: Another circular firing squad

In an embarrassment for Trump, who had campaigned for the White House on what he said were his skills as a dealmaker, the health-care bill was pulled on Friday from the floor of the House of Representatives because it failed to draw enough support from within Trump's own Republican Party.

Speaking on ABC's "This Week", the NY senator says: "We never said it was flawless".

"We may be in overtime, but I can tell you at the very end of the day, the most valuable player will be President Trump on this, because he will deliver", Meadows said Sunday.

Trump and his top aides also appeared to have moments when they alienated both the conservative and moderate Republicans needed to close the deal.

Notice too how quickly this businessman moved on to the next agenda item.

If Trump were the cold-hearted vengeful type (completely hypothetically, of course), the president could work with Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price to sabotage Obamacare in the hopes of nudging it over the edge.

Trump has cast blame on the House Freedom Caucus for the bill's failure.

The president shifted culpability to a new target as the White House and GOP lawmakers reeled from blows landed with Friday's pulling of the House bill and the Trump team set its sights on crafting tax cutting legislation.

Is the Freedom Caucus splintering?

Obamacare is "exploding. It's going south", Priebus said on "Fox News Sunday," echoing a claim the president often makes. The question now is when his voters are going to realize that Trump is not the victor he said he was.

But he added: "I think it's more or less a warning shot that we're willing to talk to anyone".

"Having tasted victory, the resistance forces will feel even more empowered to insist that Democrats continue withholding any cooperation and not granting Trump any victories when he is so wounded", said Fallon. But the chair of the Freedom Caucus unapologetic.

In the wake of the humiliating House Republican meltdown on Obamacare repeal, the president should cut a deal with people who want to expand insurance coverage and reduce premiums. If they do, it will be far a more left-leaning, big-government approach to health care than anything the Freedom Caucus opposed in this legislation.

REINCE PRIEBUS: I think it's time for our folks to come together and I also think it's time to potentially get a few moderate Democrats on board as well. They asked to allow states to impose work requirements on able-bodied Medicaid recipients - and got it.

"If he changes, he could have a different presidency", Schumer said. "I ran on that, I got sent up here for that, this bill does not do that". By all accounts, the HFC wouldn't accept Paul Ryan's draconian "replacement" for Obamacare because its members didn't merely go back to the time before the ACA was enacted - they wanted to take the health care system back to the time of Dickensian England.

In trying to repeal Obamacare, House Speaker Paul Ryan has a smaller majority caucus than what existed seven years when the law was passed.

Now, The New York Times and the Washington Post are reporting that Priebus is being blamed for the defeat of the bill, and he could be the next staffer to be kicked out of the White House.

Spicer criticized Democrats for avoiding the healthcare negotiating table before the stunning collapse of the GOP's repeal-and-replace efforts last week.

  • Carolyn Briggs