Trump, Republicans postpone vote on Obamacare replacement bill


Trump, Republicans postpone vote on Obamacare replacement bill

Barry Grey

24 March 2017

The Trump administration and the Republican leadership of the House of Representatives abruptly canceled a scheduled vote on their bill to repeal and replace Obamacare on Thursday after failing to obtain the required votes from the Republican caucus to secure passage.

Trump held a last ditch meeting Thursday morning with members of the far-right “Freedom Caucus” and offered more concessions, making the bill even more reactionary and punitive, but still failed to obtain their support. At the same time, previous concessions made to the group of some 30 Tea Party zealots alienated members of the nominally “moderate” Tuesday Group within the Republican caucus, leading at least eight of them to declare their opposition on the grounds that the bill was too harsh.

With all 193 House Democrats pledged to vote against the bill, the White House and House Speaker Paul Ryan could afford no more than 22 “no” votes from the 237 Republicans if the bill was to avoid going down to defeat. As of mid-afternoon on Thursday, the media was reporting that some 37 Republicans were planning to oppose the measure, titled the American Health Care Act (AHCA).

Ryan, who had already canceled a press conference scheduled for the morning and rescheduled it for 3:30 pm, suddenly canceled again, after which the media began to report that the vote would be postponed, without at first indicating when it might be held.

The disarray in the Trump administration and the Republican House leadership was evident. Only a few hours before, Trump had met with trucking industry executives and affirmed that the vote would be held later in the day and the measure would pass. His press secretary, Sean Spicer, insisted at…

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