After health care failure, Plan B suddenly more appealing for GOP

Since the Affordable Care Act became the law of the land in 2010, the Republican in the House have, for more than 50 times, tried to pass legislation to "repeal Obamacare" in some way or another.

"If we can come up with a bill that accomplishes the goals of the president with Republicans alone, we'll take it and we'll move forward with it", Priebus said.

"Ninety percent of our conference was very, very upset with about 10 percent, and I didn't want things being done and said that people would regret", he said.

Naively, I actually thought the objective of sending elected officials to Washington is to govern and make laws that are good for their constituents.

After the bill collapsed on Friday afternoon, President Donald Trump accused the Democrats of obstruction, Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer accused the president of incompetence, Speaker Paul Ryan said health care was done, and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi bragged that it was a great day. However, the divisions over this bill within the Republican party, specifically between the members of the Freedom Caucus and the broader party, prevented the AHCA from getting out of the House.

And when Trump and Speaker Paul Ryan wouldn't/couldn't move far enough to the right for the Freedom Caucus, it withheld its votes and left the GOP short, and with no choice but to pull the plug.

In a tweet on Sunday morning, Trump lashed out at both the Freedom Caucus and other conservatives, saying: 'Democrats are smiling in D.C. that the Freedom Caucus, with the help of Club For Growth and Heritage, have saved Planned Parenthood & Ocare!' He said he didn't expect that to happen until "our Democratic friends have to start answering to the people who are being hurt by the failures of Obamacare".

Trump has put tax reform at the top of his legislative agenda now that the healthcare bill has failed.

But Trump was trying to get House Republicans to vote for the bill until the very last minute, even though it never lived up to his promises on the campaign trail to cover everyone and do it cheaply.

Trump's edict clearly irked some lawmakers, including the Freedom Caucus chairman, Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C), whose group of more than two dozen members represented the strongest bloc against the measure. "Saying no is easy, leading is hard".

Apparently, this caused a huge surprise and disappointment to Trump since he saw that the conservative branch of the Republicans alongside other members of the party, were not in line with his plans.

"But it's going to take some work", he said.

The Freedom Caucus, primarily, has been blamed by Republicans for the failure to reach a deal last week.

Schumer, a New York Democrat, suggested that if Trump changes, "he could have a different presidency". "But it's going to be guided on our values".

Poe is right. Freedom Caucus members need to understand that they are not in the opposition anymore. Many of them also opposed the leadership's failed bill because it would have pried health coverage from millions of voters.

  • Salvatore Jensen