Trump shifts blame to conservatives on failure of health care bill

The Freedom Caucus, consisting of the House of Representatives' most conservative members, was instrumental in dealing Trump a stunning political setback on Friday when Republican House leaders pulled the healthcare legislation, derailing a major 2016 election campaign promise of the president and his allies. Harris said he doesn't see many scenarios in which Democrats will join with Trump - meaning the president will continue to need to work with centrist and conservative Republicans to get legislation through Congress.

"I will keep working with Congress, with every agency, and most importantly with the American people until we eliminate every unnecessary harmful and job-killing regulation that we can find", Trump said.

That was a very sharp turn from Friday when the president said this about the "very good people" of tea-party-inspired Freedom Caucus: "No, I'm not betrayed. I think more so now than ever, it's time for both parties to come together and get to real reforms in this country ... this President is ready to lead".

Though Trump publicly abstained from blaming House Speaker Paul Ryan, the White House suggested some fault lay with members who opposed the measure, with Spicer declaring "they would have go to back and answer to their constituents".

"Democrats are smiling in D.C. that the Freedom Caucus, with the help of Club For Growth and Heritage, have saved Planned Parenthood & Ocare!", Trump tweeted.

The failed GOP bill, which party leaders withdrew shortly before a House vote that was doomed to failure, would have repealed much of former President Barack Obama's health care law.

"The issue was always the conservatives were not brought to the table in the Republican Party", he said.

Earlier Monday, White House spokesman Sean Spicer suggested Trump might turn to members of the Democratic Party to overhaul Obamacare and the US president seconded that notion on Twitter Monday night. They asked to allow states to impose work requirements on able-bodied Medicaid recipients - and got it.

"I think they're pretty shell-shocked at their inability to get anything done".

Democrats learned a valuable lesson last week as they watched Republicans sink their own health care bill.

"We voted 60 times to repeal Obamacare".

On Friday, caucus member Justin Amash, of MI, argued the group had done nothing more than exercise its authority to improve the legislation - despite dire warnings from the White House and leaders that voting against the bill could hurt the President's agenda and threaten the party's political future. EFE news quoted Trump as saying in a tweet.

Poe, who planned to vote for the bill, then quit the group Sunday. Trump wrote, shortening the term "Obamacare". We were captives in an internal House caucus fight.

"I like Speaker Ryan".

"They have a history of losing members after they've gone too far and their position is indefensible to the rest of the conference", the senior GOP aide said Sunday after Poe announced his departure.

  • Larry Hoffman