On Sunday, President Trump launched attacks on conservatives, blaming them for the failure of the proposed Health Care Bill, then signals an increased willingness to collaborate with moderate Democrats on the upcoming budget and tax legislation.
On twitter, Trump stated that “Democrats are smiling in D.C. that the Freedom Caucus, with the help of Club For Growth and Heritage, have saved Planned Parenthood & Ocare!” This tweet had a rippling effect, with responses coming from conservatives, democrats, and even the White House.
With the possibility of health care legislation being revisited after budget and tax reform, one of the main questions being tossed around is whether Trump has plans to repair ObamaCare and is willing to work with democrats.
White House chief of staff Reince Priebus says “I don’t think the president is closing the door on anything.” Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., further insinuated that democrats remain ready to work along with trump to repair Obamacare, as long as he ceases to undermine it any further. Schumer warns that Trump will “lose again” is he remains loyal to conservative demands.
“If he changes, he could have a different presidency,” Schumer adds. But he’s going to have to tell the Freedom Caucus and the hard-right special wealthy interests who are dominating his presidency … he can’t work with them, and we’ll certainly look at his proposals.”
Rep. Charlie Dent, R-Pa says that the Republican’s most conservative sector had no intentions to ever stand behind the bill and that by Trump making concessions to them, Trump “alienated moderates.”
Drafted by Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, and withdrawn moments before the House voted on it, the failed bill would have effectively repealed and replaced Obamacare, established by President Barack Obama. It would have eliminated the penalties taxpayers faced for declining to purchase health insurance, as well as the increased taxes placed on high-income earners and health industry corporations, all while avoiding the medicare expansion provided to low-income individuals. Additionally, it would have prevented the government from providing federal subsidies to Planned Parenthood.
White House chief of staff Reince Priebus expressed Trump’s blame against conservative republicans, claiming that Trump felt “disappointed” that a “number of people he thought were loyal to him that weren’t.”
“It’s time for the party to start governing,” Priebus proclaimed. “I think it’s time for our folks to come together, and I also think it’s time to potentially get a few moderate Democrats on board as well.”
To add more fuel to the fire, Priebus advocated that Trump will begin to set his sights beyond the republican majorities’ reach by appealing to moderate Democrats during his future legislative endeavors, pointing his nudge of disdain towards The Freedom Caucus and the Tuesday Group for their heavy resisting against the health-care legislation. “We can’t be chasing the perfect all the time,” Priebus exclaimed while appearing on “Fox News Sunday.” “I mean, sometimes you have to take the good and put it in your pocket and take the win.”
After resigning from the House Freedom Caucus because of their role in obstructing the bill, Rep. Ted Poe, R-Texas said that “You can have your principles and then when it comes to voting, you have to compromise to get something passed,” Poe observed of the caucus, made up of approximately three dozen members.”It will continue to be the opposition party in the party,” he continued., after insisting he would have supported the legislation. “We cannot be effective if we continue to vote no.”
GOP strategist and former congressional aide Doug Heye commented that Republicans’ reluctance to forge a consensus on the bill shook the party to the core.
“It’s hard to see where we can be successful, and it leads to a lot of questions as to whether Republicans can govern, even with a Republican in the White House,” he declared.
As one of the founders of the Freedom Caucus who now serves as the White House budget director, Mick Mulvaney struggled to explain the Republican holdback.
While on ABC’s “This Week with George Stephanopoulos.” Mulvaney responded to President Trump’s tweet without animosity. “I mean, if [Democrats are] applauding, they shouldn’t because I can tell you that conversations over the last 48 hours are really about how we come together in the Republican Conference and try to get this over the finish line.”
Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), who heads the Freedom Caucus, responded to the tweet without any animosity toward the president.
“I mean, if [Democrats are] applauding, they shouldn’t, because I can tell you that conversations over the last 48 hours are really about how we come together in the Republican Conference and try to get this over the finish line,” he said on ABC’s “This Week with George Stephanopoulos.”
Trump aids have increased talks about collaborating with moderate democrats about another health care reform bill, but there have no reported attempts to reach out to Democrats about the tax proposal.
“If he aims a proposal aimed at the middle class and the poor people . . . we could work with them. But I don’t think they’re headed in that direction, and they’re going repeat the same mistake,” said Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.). According to Michael Steel, “The president is going to have a choice: to reach out to moderate Democrats and work in a bipartisan fashion; or to reach out to recalcitrant Republicans in his own party that he wasn’t able to get this time.”