The plan to “repeal and replace” Obamacare that was shot down on Friday was complicated politically. Nearly all Republicans wanted the “repeal” part, just as nearly all Democrats opposed it. The hangup was on the “replace” part. Conservative Republicans, by and large, opposed the proposed replacement as little more than “Obamacare lite,” retaining the huge government role in healthcare that they oppose in the current law. So it isn’t completely fair to say that Republicans who wouldn’t vote for the replacement were refusing to repeal Obamacare.
The American Health Care Act was a creation of Speaker Paul Ryan and other “establishment” Republicans who accept a somewhat more activist role for government.
Here is the irony: Virtually all of the “Freedom Caucus” Republican congressmen who were responsible for defeating the bill were Trump supporters during the presidential campaign! Ryan and the other authors of the proposed health care plan not so much!
Yet President Trump allied himself with his former opponents, throwing the full force of his office behind their bill, and now vilifies the lawmakers who otherwise are on his side! [Read more…]