The new “Trumpcare” bill is a disaster, as written, and does nothing to fix what was wrong with Obamacare.
That isn’t just my opinion. Many Republicans and conservatives feel the same way, including members of the House Freedom Caucus, the conservative wing of House Republicans.
On Monday night, the HFC said they felt they had enough votes to defeat the bill, and would vote accordingly, unless changes were made.
The bill comes up for a vote on Thursday night. HFC Chairman Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) has said that the information he got was that the changes being made on Monday night were the last changes to be made to the onerous Obamacare replacement.
“I’m confident that we still have enough concerns that a vote of 216 votes in the House would not happen today,” Meadows told reporters as he left a Monday night meeting of the Freedom Caucus, referring to the number of House votes needed to pass the measure.
He said he has done a whip count of his members, and while he would not share the exact total, he indicated it is more than the 22 votes needed to sink the measure.
President Trump is expected to attend the House GOP conference meeting today, in order to persuade those holdouts to accept the bill, as it is now written, but HFC members say they won’t be pressured to change their minds.
“They don’t have the votes to pass it,” Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.) stated flatly after the meeting, noting, “I’ve been yelled at before.”
Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas), a former chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, said Monday night after the meeting that he is leaning against the measure, describing himself as a “friendly lean no.”
The big concern for HFC members is premiums. They want to roll back the Obamacare regulations that mandate which health services a plan is required to cover, feeling that this drives up premiums.
Asked what happens if the bill fails in the vote on Thursday, Rep. Raul Labrador (R-Idaho) said: “I think it actually makes it much easier for us to pass a better bill.”
And I’ll add that if you have a problem with this bill, call your representatives in Washington and let them know, before Thursday.
Emails they may not read, but flooding their phone lines with objections tends to have more of an effect.