President Trump told House GOP members that failing to pass the new healthcare bill is not an option
President Donald Trump went up to Capitol Hill with Health and Human Services secretary Tom Price as well as his Budget Director Mick Mulvaney, to rally Republicans on the issue passing the American Health Care Act.
President Trump wants Republicans to support the repeal and replace bill that Speaker of the House Paul Ryan has been pushing. President Trump has invested a great deal of his own political capital on this bill and it failing to pass would be a loss for the White House.
Meanwhile, President Trump got some push-back from a number of conservative and moderate members of the GOP House and he was quick to issue a stern warning on Tuesday, telling Republicans they could lose their seats — and the House majority — in 2018 if they fail to repeal and replace ObamaCare.
The House is slated to vote on the American Health Care Act on Thursday. If it passes, it will head to the Senate, where it faces a tougher road. But that is fight for another day – today – President Trump was not in a deal making mood and the meeting took a quick turn as he made it clear he does not want the bill to fail.
The president even went after the leader of the House Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), who’s led the conservative opposition to the Republican health care plan. “Mark, I’m gonna come after you” if he keeps it up, Trump said, according to multiple sources.
President Trump knows that Meadows has been a strong supporter of his on most things and some members thought the president was kidding the Congressman. But singling him out in front of his colleagues sent a clear message: Trump wants him to get in line now.
“This Thursday we have a chance to repeal and replace Obamacare, and this time you’ve actually got someone who will sign the bill,” Trump told them. “I’m asking for your vote.”
As he left the meeting, Trump cautiously predicted victory on Thursday.
“We’re going to have a real winner,” Trump said. “It was a great meeting. They’re terrific people. They want a tremendous health care plan. That’s what we have, and there are going to be adjustments to it. But I think we’ll get the votes.”
Several Freedom Caucus members exited the meeting saying they still weren’t convinced they should back the plan. Rep. Scott DesJarlais (R-Tenn.), a Freedom Caucus member and one of Trump’s earliest campaign supporters in Congress, said his mind was not changed by the president’s appearance. The same was true for Rep. Mark Sanford, the former South Carolina governor.
Some quotes in the story were from Politico.