The votes for Obamacare repeal aren’t there, Ryan tells Trump

As the battle to win support for a healthcare overhaul continues, House Speaker Paul Ryan has visited the White House to tell the president that there still aren’t enough Republican votes

The votes for Obamacare repeal aren’t there, Ryan tells Trump

Insurance News

By Ryan Smith

Image: Gage Skidmore

As Republicans scramble to come up with the support they need to overhaul the healthcare system, House Speaker Paul Ryan has met with the president to tell him they lack the votes to pass their plan.

President Donald Trump issued an ultimatum to Republicans Thursday – either support his controversial healthcare plan – which moderates think too severe and right-wingers say doesn’t go far enough – or prepare to keep Obamacare in place. But Ryan, meeting with Trump at the White House today, told the president there weren’t enough votes to pass the legislation, Reuters reported.

Trump has attempted to negotiate with members of the far-right Freedom Caucus who oppose the bill. At a meeting on Thursday, he agreed to eliminate insurance requirements for benefits like maternity care, mental health and emergency services, according to the Times. But those concessions ended up gaining him no support from the bill’s right-wing detractors, while scaring even more moderates away. Faced with certain failure if the vote took place on Thursday as scheduled, House leaders postponed it.

But Trump demanded a vote today, vowing there would be no further changes to the bill. If Ryan is correct, though, the bill is doomed to failure unless several recalcitrant GOP lawmakers change their votes. They have no help from the other side of the aisle; every House Democrat opposes the bill.

This afternoon, Press Secretary Sean Spicer said the vote would still take place today.

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